ST. PAUL, Minn. (Feb. 15) —H.B. Fuller and Japan's Sekisui Chemical Co. have signed a deal to enter into joint ventures in both Japan and China. The definitive agreement initially will give the U.S. company the leadership position in the Chinese venture and Sekisui the majority ownership in Japan.
Sekisui and H.B. Fuller will merge their Japanese adhesives businesses to create a new entity named Sekisui-Fuller Co. Ltd. Sekisui will own 60 percent at first, but H.B. Fuller will have an option, exercisable after two years, to increase its equity ownership to 50 percent.
The new entity will be one of the largest industrial adhesives businesses in Japan, Fuller said, with sales of about $150 million and strength in assembly, packaging and non-woven segments. Employees from both companies will be employed under the joint firm.
In China, Fuller will sell a 20-percent equity interest in its China operations to Sekisui. The Japanese firm will have an option to increase its stake to 30 percent after two years. The partnership will be able to leverage Sekisui´s relationships with Japanese companies operating in China to boost sales growth, according to an H.B. Fuller statement.