BASF refocusing sterol ester business with Illinois site sale

By Stephen Daniells contact

- Last updated on GMT

© Chainarong Prasertthai / Getty Images
© Chainarong Prasertthai / Getty Images

Related tags: Sterol esters, Vitamin e, Vegetable oils

BASF Nutrition & Health has agreed to sell its manufacturing site in Kankakee, IL and the associated businesses of vegetable-oil-based raw material sterols and natural vitamin E, anionic surfactants and esters produced there.

The sale to One Rock Capital Partners, LLC, a U.S.-based private equity firm is expected to close in the first half of 2021, subject to the approval of the relevant competition authorities. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

A spokesperson for BASF Nutrition & Health told NutraIngredients-USA that the company is divesting the vegetable oil-based pharmaceutical raw material sterols and natural vitamin E business worldwide, but this represents only a small subset of the global Nutrition & Health business.

“BASF is refocusing on its global cholesterol lowering sterol ester business, which it is retaining and operating from other sites in Europe,” ​said the spokesperson. “BASF is also firmly committed to the GBU Human Nutrition globally and in North America, continuing to focus on creating superior health and food ingredients and formulations that meet nutritional challenges and needs of ever-evolving lifestyles.”

“No longer a strategic fit for BASF”

BASF acquired the site and its businesses from Cognis in 2010. It is operated jointly by the company’s Nutrition & Health and the Care Chemicals divisions.

“Based on a recent careful market review it was determined that the site is no longer a strategic fit for BASF,” ​said the company in a release.

The businesses have around 160 employees including business management and commercial personnel across the US.

“With this divestment, we are sharpening the profile of our human nutrition business, to which we remain firmly committed, with focus on creating superior food ingredients and formulations that meet challenges and needs of continuously evolving lifestyles,”​ said Dr. Melanie Maas-Brunner, President of BASF’s Nutrition & Health division.

Tony Lee, Managing Partner of One Rock Capital Partners, commented: “During recent years, the Kankakee site has established a strong reputation for delivering natural, high-quality, mission critical products to its global customer base. We look forward to building on its success and providing customers with exceptional service and new innovations.”

BASF continues to produce anionic surfactants for the home care, personal care and industrial formulators industries at its other sites worldwide.

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