kuraray


News Releases 2004

Kuraray Co., Ltd. acquires Polyvinyl Butyral Film Business of HT Troplast AG

Nov 8, 2004
Kuraray Co., Ltd.

Kuraray Co., Ltd. ("Kuraray") has signed a contract with Rütgers AG ("Rütgers"), Germany, to acquire Polyvinyl Butyral ("PVB") film business (the "Business") of HT Troplast AG, a subsidiary of Rütgers.

The Business, located in Troisdorf (near Bonn), Germany, has 13% share of the global market of interlayer films for *safety laminated glass, and seats in a leading position especially in the field of architectural application in Europe.
This transaction is consistent with Kuraray's strategy to focus on and expand the "Vinyl Acetate Chemical Chains Business" consisting of PVA, EVOH, EVAL, PVA fiber (KURALON, KURALON K-Ⅱ) ,PVA film and so on, which is one of the core businesses of Kuraray.

In line with this strategy, at the end of 2001, Kuraray acquired PVA and PVB businesses of Clariant AG, Germany. Those businesses are now operated by Kuraray Specialities Europe GmbH ("KSE"), which was founded for the succession of those businesses.
In August 2003, KSE started the expansion of its PVA plant in order to meet the growing market demand and developed applications in Europe.

There is a fifty-year commercial relationship between HT Company's PVA film business and KSE's PVB resin business. This transaction is deemed as a business development towards the downstream of the " Vinyl Acetate Chemical Chains Business", which will enable Kuraray to establish a consistent production flow from PVA resin to PVB resin and PVB film. Furthermore, through integrated operation of research and development activities and realization of synergy effects brought by this transaction, Kuraray will take proper actions to respond to the diversified needs in the growing architectural and automotive safety laminated glass industries in Europe, United States and Asia, with a purpose to achieve meddle and long term business expansion.

Trough this transaction, Kuraray as a global leader in "Vinyl Acetate Chemical Chains Business", will accelerate the expansion and development in the world market by organic collaboration among Japan, Asia and Europe as well as the increase of its presence in European market.

The transaction is subject to formal approval by the competent authorities.

Brief Portrait of Business

Location Troisdorf, Germany
Turnover approx. EURO 100 million
Employees approx. 250 persons
Affiliates 1 plant in Russia, 3 sales offices in the State, India, and Malaysia
*safety laminated glass
This is a special glass that is constructed from two panes of glass with a sheet of PVB Film between them. It is resistant to cracking and shattering, and so is used for Automotive windshields and in construction.

[ Reference: Brief Portrait of respective company ]

Kuraray Co., Ltd. (Ultimate Parent of KSE)

President Yasuaki Wakui
Headquarters Tokyo, Japan
Annual Sales approx.332 billion yen.
Major business lines PVA resin, EVOH resin and their related products,
Isoprene Chemicals, Methacrylic Resins,
Manmade leather, Polyester fiber

Kuraray Specialities Europe GmbH

President Dr. Gerd Lepper
Headquarters Frankfurt, Germany
Paid-in capital 20 million euros(100% capitalized by Kuraray Europe)
Production capacity MOWIOL PVA resin 50,000 tons per year( early 2005 + 20,000 tons per year)
MOWITAL PVB resin 20,000 tons per year
Number of Employees approx.250

Rütgers AG (parent company of HT Troplast AG)

Chairman of the Supervisory Board Professor Dr. Utz Hellmuth Felcht
CEO Dr. Heinz Rzehak
Headquarters Essen, Germany
Annual Sales EURO 2,491 Million (FY2003)