LEVERKUSEN, Germany (Nov. 17) — Lanxess GmbH plans to sell its unprofitable Dorlastan polyurethane fibers business to Asahi Kasei Fibers Corp. of Osaka, Japan, as part of a continuing plan by the Bayer A.G. spin-off to reorganize its portfolio.
The firms have signed a memorandum of understanding, and Lanxess said the agreement is expected to be signed shortly. Financial terms were not disclosed. Competition authorities must approve the purchase before it proceeds.
"The Dorlastan fibers business has suffered for many years from the migration of textile markets to Asia," said Lanxess Chairman Axel Heitmann. "Selling the business to AKF enables Lanxess to avoid closing the Dormagen site, which has been unprofitable for years."
The company indicated that 110 jobs will be lost at Dormagen, and another 30 at its U.S. facility in Bushy Park, S.C.
This sale is Laxness' first portfolio adjustment. The group has made no secret of the fact that it wants to sell, or put into partnerships, activities with "better prospects as part of another company."
Adding Dorlastan will enable the Japanese fiber maker to strengthen its position in synthetic elastic fibers and expand its geographical presence, Heitmann said.