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‘Activist’ shareholder demands change at Elementis

Gatemore Capital Management has published an open letter to John O’Higgins, chairman of the board at UK-based speciality chemicals company Elementis, stating that there is “an urgent need for change”. This echoes a letter from another ‘activist’ shareholder in late 2023.

Elementis mainly supplies the personal care sector, notably cosmetic and antiperspirant actives – it is the world market leader in the latter field. 85% of its products are of natural origin. Coatings and paper are other key markets.

Syensqo completes Korean buy

Syensqo has completed the acquisition of JinYoung Bio, a speciality cosmetic ingredients supplier based in South Korea. The company said that this “marks a significant step in expanding Syensqo’s portfolio toward more natural and high-value speciality skin care solutions with both functional and active ingredients”.

Lubrizol in Asian advances

Lubrizol has opened a new Global Capability Centre (GCC) in Pune, India, as “a strategic hub to accelerate its growth in the region and enable closer collaboration for its customers and employees”. It has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding to renew its strategic partnership with Proya Cosmetics in China.

Clariant completes cosmetic buy

Clariant has completed the previously announced acquisition of Lucas Meyer Cosmetics, a German-based maker of cosmetics and personal care ingredients, from IFF. The deal is based on an enterprise value of $810 million, subject to customary net debt and working capital adjustments.

Evonik adds Botanicals & Natural Actives business segment

Evonik is establishing a new business segment named Botanicals & Natural Actives within the Nutrition & Care division. This brings together various legacy products and recent acquisitions to meet demand for botanical extracts and natural actives. These include:

* Argentine firm Novachem, which offers natural and sustainable active ingredients for skin and hair care applications

* Swiss sustainable botanicals pioneer Botanica

* Alkion Biopharma, a specialist in biotechnologically developed cosmetic active ingredients

Symrise in Indian JV

Symrise and India’s Virchow Group have agreed to make personal care ingredients from the Symrise portfolio through a new joint venture called Vizag Care Ingredients, beginning within 1H. This will be based on Virchow’s synthetic chemistry capabilities for API manufacture.

Symrise owns a majority in the new entity, which is based in Visakhapatnam and has one local chemical manufacturing site, enabling it to back-integrate into raw materials and form a resilient global value chain. Symrise will market the resulting products.

KCC to takes over Momentive

South Korean paint and chemicals firm KCC has agreed to acquire the minority stake of SJL Partners Momentive Performance Materials and assume full ownership. This is subject to customary closing conditions and no price has been disclosed. Based in New York state, Momentive is a major supplier of silicone and speciality products for applications including personal care.

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