Aditya Birla Group Completes Columbian Chemicals Deal


June 21, 2011

The Aditya Birla Group today announced the completion of the transaction relating to its acquisition of the Atlanta-based Columbian Chemicals Company, subsequent to having obtained all regulatory approvals in seven different jurisdictions. The acquisition of Columbian Chemicals was made at a price of US $ 875 million. It catapults the Aditya Birla Group to the world’s No. 1 carbon black producer.

The newly constituted Board of Directors for Columbian Chemicals is chaired by Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairman, Aditya Birla Group. Other Directors from the Group, include Mrs. Rajashree Birla, Mr. Rajiv Dube, Dr. Santrupt Misra, Mr. D. D. Rathi and Mr. Kevin Boyle, CEO, Columbian Chemicals.

Says Mr. Birla, “We view the Carbon Black business as a significant global business in our portfolio. There is a lot to be derived from this coming together of the two entities. Columbian Chemicals’ excellent R&D capability, multiple speciality products, customer connect in North America and South America, coupled with committed teams, will add to the strength of the Carbon Black business. Likewise, our strength in scale economies, managing large capacity plants and managing multiple emerging markets, will be leveraged. This, together, with the experience and expertise that our teams have in growing an acquired company’s revenues and earnings significantly, should enable us take the Carbon Black business to a far higher plane.”

Adds Dr. Santrupt Misra, “The completion of the acquisition of Columbian Chemicals is indeed a milestone in our Carbon Black business. At one stroke it doubles our capacity, from 1 million tons to 2 million tons. It extends our geographic reach. Our global footprint now spans 12 countries – India, Thailand, Egypt, China, USA, Brazil, Korea, Spain, Canada, Hungary, Germany and Italy, where we collectively have 17 state-of-theart manufacturing units. The deal helps in giving us a foothold in the mature markets of North America and strengthens our position in Europe and in emerging markets. Our focus is on unrelenting value creation and optimizing costs through innovation in areas such as logistics, sourcing and technology. We expect synergies in excess US $ 50 million.”

The Aditya Birla Group is among the most cost efficient manufacturers of carbon black. It is a global provider of high quality carbon black additives that cater to the requirements of leading tyre and other rubber manufacturers. Its products also service the ink and plastic segments.

A US $30 billion corporation, the Aditya Birla Group is in the League of Fortune 500. It is anchored by an extraordinary force of over 131,000 employees, belonging to 42 different nationalities. The Group has been adjudged among the top two Best Employers in India by the Aon–Hewitt Study conducted recently. Earlier it has been rated as the six great places for leaders to work in the Asia Pacific Region (The Hewitt Associates, The RBL Group and Fortune Magazine Study 2009). The Group operates in 33 countries. Over 60 per cent of its revenues of US $ 30 billion flow from its overseas operations.