Sector News

Albemarle to realign corporate structure after Rockwood deal

January 21, 2015
Energy & Chemical Value Chain
Albemarle today announced a corporate realignment in the wake of its $6.2-billion acquisition of Rockwood Holdings, which closed last week. The company will establish three global business units, effective by the end of the first quarter. The three units will be called: performance chemicals, Chemetall surface treatment, and refining solutions.
 
The performance chemicals unit will consist of the lithium, aluminum alkyls and derivative catalysts businesses in Albemarle’s current performance chemicals unit. The Chemetall surface treatment unit will consist of businesses focused on specialty chemicals for metal and plastic surface treatment, which were largely acquired from Rockwood. The refining solutions unit will include refinery catalysts, and be divided into the heavy oil upgrading and clean fuel technologies business lines. Each unit will have dedicated personnel for a variety of functions, including sales, research, process engineering, and manufacturing, Albemarle says.
 
“The new company will be structured to leverage its complementary fit, especially between lithium and bromine, allowing us to capitalize on our long-term lithium strategy while providing immediate scale and ability to leverage its similarities with bromine,” says Luke Kissam, CEO of Albemarle.
 
Joris Merckx will lead the Chemtall surface treatment unit, a role he has held, within Rockwood, since 2012. The performance chemicals unit will be led by Michael Wilson, who has been president/catalyst solutions at Albemarle since 2013. Silvio Ghyoot, who joined Albemarle in 1990 and is currently an exec in catalyst sales, will lead the refining solutions unit. Matt Juneau, previously president/performance chemicals at Albemarle, will become senior v.p./corporate strategy and investor relations. All four executives will report to Kissam, the CEO. Other Albemarle senior executives, including CFO Scott Tozier, will remain in their positions.
 
By Vincent Valk
 

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