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Rhodia reinforces its worldwide leadership in guar technology

Rhodia reinforces its worldwide leadership in guar technology

News release

Paris (France), January 10, 2011 ---- Rhodia announces the acquisition of the new guar derivatives* production unit belonging to the Suzhou HiPro Polymers company, based at Zhangjiagang in China (Jiangsu Province). This Chinese unit will complement Rhodia’s existing global guar derivatives manufacturing footprint with production units located in North America (USA), in Europe (France) and in Asia-Pacific (India). This acquisition will enable Rhodia to meet the fast-growing demand for guar–based products in Asia, particularly from the personal care market.

The parties have agreed not to disclose financial details of the acquisition. The completion of the transaction is subject to various customary closing conditions, expected to be finalized in the first quarter of 2011.

In parallel, Rhodia also is investing in its North American facility in Texas (Vernon) to increase its guar derivatives production capacity and improve its competitiveness. This additional capacity will contribute to meeting increasing global customer demand, in particular in the oilfield and gas, and personal care markets.

"This targeted acquisition and the enhancement of our industrial assets will reinforce our worldwide leadership position in guar technology as a supplier of natural guar-based materials used primarily in personal care, agrochemicals and oilfield applications", commented Emmanuel Butstraen, President of Rhodia Novecare. "These two investments are completely in line with Rhodia Novecare’s strategy targeting organic as well as external growth. Following the recent acquisition of Feixiang Chemicals in surfactants, it also represents a further step in our drive to develop our presence in China and capture the fast-growing market in Asia-Pacific".

Rhodia’s guar-based range, mainly sold under the Jaguar® trade name, is derived from the vegetable and renewable fibers of guar beans. Natural guar-based products are used in the personal care market to provide hair and skin conditioning benefits in shampoo and cleansing products. They are also used as antidrift agents in Rhodia’s patented agrochemical applications and as a thickener in oil and gas extraction.

*Guar derivatives come from the guar plant, mainly growing in Southern Asia, from which guar gum, a polysaccharide, is extracted. Guar gum and upstream value-add guar derivatives are used for their natural, biocompatible and gelatinous properties in various industries (food, cosmetics, oilfield and gas, etc).         

Rhodia is an international chemical company resolutely committed to sustainable development. As a leader in its businesses, the Group aims to improve its customers’ performance through the pursuit of operational excellence and its ability to innovate. Rhodia is the partner of major players in the automotive, electronics, flavors and fragrances, health, personal and home care markets, consumer goods and industrial markets. The Group employs around 13,600 people worldwide and generated sales of €4.03 billion in 2009. Rhodia is listed on Euronext Paris.

Rhodia Novecare, with net sales of €1.2 billion*, provides high-performance products and solutions to a wide range of industries including cosmetics, detergents, agrochemicals and oil, as well as coating and industrial applications. Thanks to a worldwide industrial footprint and global R&D and tech-support network, Rhodia Novecare holds leading positions in the surfactants, phosphorus derivatives, natural polymers, synthetic polymers and monomers technologies, and eco-friendly oxygenated solvents markets. Rhodia Novecare has developed particular expertise to answer and anticipate customer needs in protection, surface modification, rheology, active delivery, improvement of formulations and processes and sustainability.


*:Novecare Sales Proforma Rhodia Feixiang Specialty Chemicals included. Last-twelve-months as of Sept 30th, 2010


For more information, please visit our website: www.rhodia.com or www.rhodia.co.uk


Contacts 
 
Media Relations

Novecare Global
– Véronique Bienaymé   +33 (0)1 53 56 52 45    veronique.bienayme@eu.rhodia.com

Novecare North America – Camille Thomas +1 609-860-3159      camille.thomas@us.rhodia.com

Rhodia North America – David Klucsik   +1 609-860-3616            david.klucsik@us.rhodia.com