Saudi Aramco and Germany's Lanxess, a leading specialty chemicals company, announced Wednesday Saudi Aramco's proposed acquisition of Lanxess' 50 percent interest in Arlanxeo, a Netherlands-based specialty chemicals joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Lanxess launched in 2016.
"Saudi Aramco's proposed purchase of Lanxess's 50 percent share in Arlanxeo, valued at €1.5 billion on an enterprise value basis, would result in Saudi Aramco owning 100 percent of Arlanxeo, diversifying Saudi Aramco's downstream portfolio at an opportune time, and strengthening Saudi Aramco's capabilities across the entire petroleum value chain," a press release read.
Saudi Aramco's senior vice president of downstream, Abdulaziz M. Al-Judaimi, noted the proposed acquisition was key to the company's strategy to become the world's foremost-integrated energy and chemicals company.
"Notably, the acquisition will accelerate our growth into C4-based chemicals including butadiene and isobutylene," Al-Judaimi said.
According to the statement, Arlanxeo is a "world-class" synthetic rubber and elastomer products company that supplies tire and auto-parts to manufacturers around the globe.
"As a fully owned subsidiary of Saudi Aramco, Arlanxeo will accelerate the development of growth opportunities in the Kingdom, leveraging the strong feedstock position of Saudi Aramco," it said.
In addition, Arlanxeo would "enhance Saudi Aramco's sustainability efforts to optimize tire performance-related fuel consumption, which could potentially result in a savings of as much as seven percent".
The acquisition, which Saudi Armaco says is in alignment with its strategy in the downstream sector towards further expansion, would also complement its fuel engine R&D strategy that is focused on increasing mileage efficiency and reducing engine emissions in the future.
Subject to all regulatory approvals, Saudi Aramco and Lanxess are targeting Dec. 31, 2018 for the completion of the transaction.
Arlanxeo will maintain its current base in Maastricht, the Netherlands.
By Hale Turkes