Altana Chemie AG, the specialty chemicals division of Altana, has signed an agreement to acquire Eckart GmbH & Co. KG, Furth, Germany. Eckart, an international specialty chemicals group, is a leading manufacturer of metallic effect pigments and metallic printing inks. In 2004, the company achieved a sales volume of €302 million and operating earnings of €65 million. Eckart employs about 1,850 people worldwide. After approval by the relevant antitrust authorities, the company’s economic integration into Altana’s Chemicals division is planned to take place in the fourth quarter of 2005. The gross purchase price of the Eckart group is €630 million.
“The acquisition of Eckart is associated with an attractive synergy potential since we will be able to open additional growth possibilities and make optimum use of Altana Chemie’s existing areas of competence and structures,” said Dr. Matthias L. Wolfgruber, president and CEO of Altana Chemie AG, on the planned transaction.
“Altana Chemie is the ideal partner for us. On the one hand, the group maintains first-rate contacts in international markets. It has an enormous know-how of product applications and the necessary financial power to drive forward ongoing innovation and expansion processes. Furthermore, Altana can look back on a long family tradition, just like Eckart, and its corporate culture is very similar to ours. Therefore, the acquisition will safeguard the long-term future of our company. This is good news for all Eckart customers and employees. Eckart will be in good hands with Altana,” said Carl Friedrich Eckart, managing partner of the Eckart group.