Bloomberg News

BASF to Alter EuroChem Deal as Borealis Picks Up a Site

November 25, 2011

(Updates with Borealis distribution in sixth paragraph.)

Nov. 25 (Bloomberg) -- BASF SE, the world’s biggest chemical company, is restructuring the planned 700 million-euro ($926 million) sale of its nitrogen-fertilizer operations to OAO EuroChem after Abu Dhabi-owned Borealis bought rights to a site linked to the sale.

BASF had planned to sell its 50 percent share of the PEC- Rhin site in France to EuroChem. GPN, a partner in the PEC-Rhin venture, exercised its right to buy BASF’s share and will sell the entire business to Borealis, according to a statement from Borealis.

BASF’s plan to sell its two, larger remaining nitrogen sites to EuroChem remains on schedule and there is no significant financial impact from the remodeled deal, said Jennifer Moore-Braun, a spokeswoman for the Ludwigshafen, Germany-based chemical maker. Financial terms of the transactions haven’t been disclosed.

The change in planned ownership of PEC-Rhin may also have implications for K+S AG, which has an exclusive agreement to distribute nitrogen from BASF’s sites through 2014.

EuroChem, owned by K+S investor Andrey Melnichenko, is in talks with the German potash maker for the purchase of a unit that distributes nitrogen fertilizer, three people familiar with the situation said Nov. 18. Melnichenko may pay with K+S shares, and the asset should fetch at least 100 million euros, the people said.

Borealis will use its own distribution arm called Linzer Agro Trade GmbH, based in Austria, Kerstin Meckler, a spokeswoman for Borealis, said by phone.

BASF traded 2.6 percent higher at 47.66 euros as of 4:20 p.m. in Frankfurt.

--Editors: Jerrold Colten, Thomas Mulier

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andrew Noel at anoel@bloomberg.net


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