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Eglisau, November 13, 2001
Forbo is negotiating the acquisition of the SWIFT adhesives business from Reichhold Inc., headquartered in North Carolina, USA. Reichhold Inc. is a $ 1,3 billion specialty chemical company and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dainippon Ink and Chemicals Incorporated (DIC), Japan. The transaction planned comprises all SWIFT activities in Europe, USA, Canada, Central and South America as well as a joint venture in China. The SWIFT adhesives business has annual sales of approximately CHF 400 million. The negotiations are expected to be finalized by the end of the year.
Forbo's current adhesives activities will achieve sales of approximately CHF 230 million this year with an internal growth rate of around 7 %. Half of the turnover is generated in building and construction applications, the other half in adhesives for industrial use. In industrial adhesives the company has strong positions in Spain, Germany, Switzerland and in some export markets. The principal application segments are automotive, product assembly, footwear, woodworking and packaging.
The acquisition of SWIFT would add critical size to Forbo's current business and give access to economies of scale as well as expertise. The business is geographically very complementary strengthening the position in Europe and allowing entry into the US market with a very strong operation. It would also add technologies and capabilities and will complement the existing application segments. This transaction will turn Forbo into an important global player in industrial adhesives and will provide the company with a significant platform to further develop its profitable industrial adhesives business.
**Annual sales of SWIFT are approximately CHF 400 million, of which CHF 240 million arise in North America and CHF 140 million in Europe. The operation has around 700 employees. Consultation with Works Councils of the relevant operations are being initiated.
Forbo is a global producer of floor coverings and industrial specialties. It employs some 5 800 people worldwide and has an international network of 28 production companies in 12 countries and 67 marketing organizations in 25 countries.
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