Degussa sells US metallurgy unit

Degussa is selling its US subsidiary, the Amherst, NY-based ESM Group, to the US American financial investment company Platinum Equity for $55 million.

The sale of ESM brings to a conclusion the sale of Degussa’s entire metallurgical chemicals business. Last year, as part of its aim to concentrate on specialty chemicals, Degussa sold its foundry, steel and continuous casting powder businesses.

ESM offers products and services for hot metal desulphurisation, and its market is almost exclusively in the North American steel industry. In fiscal 2004, its 275 employees generated sales of around $150 million.

The transaction, which is expected to close by the end of the year, is subject to the approval of the relevant regulatory authorities.