Shell Acquires Industrial Fluids Manufacturer


Shell Lubricants acquired the assets of American Chemical Technologies Inc., which manufactures and distributes industrial fluids that are based on polyalkylene glycol chemistries, the company announced last week. Terms were not disclosed.

The purchase includes ACT’s intellectual property, customer contracts and technology and product pipeline, along with its two manufacturing facilities in Fowlerville, Michigan – where the company is based – and Bowling Green, Kentucky.

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According to ACT’s website, its specialized lubricant products include fire retardant hydraulic fluids for use in high temperature environments, environmentally acceptable lubricants for sensitive marine applications, non-varnishing turbine fluids for large gas turbines used in power generation, synthetic gear compounds, synthetic compressor fluids and specialty greases.

“PAGs are used in a wide range of industrial lubricant applications where high performance, heat-tolerant lubricants are needed, including in hydraulics, gear boxes, compressors, refrigeration systems, heat transfer fluids and metalworking fluids,” according to consultant Geeta S. Agashe, president of Geeta Agashe & Associates LLC. PAGs are considered environmentally friendly because they offer rapid biodegradation and low toxicity levels.

The company works with industries including power generation, primary metals, marine, tunneling, amusement and entertainment, and die casting and forging.

“The acquisition enables Shell Lubricants to expand its product offering to industrial customers, especially those in the primary metals and power sectors,” SOPUS Products President Carlos Maurer said in a news release issued Dec. 19. “The resilient [business-to-business] industry sector is a key pillar in Shell Lubricants’ growth strategy, and ACT’s portfolio of fire-resistant fluids, unique industrial lubricants and environmentally acceptable lubricants ideally complements our existing U.S. industrial lubricants portfolio,” Maurer stated.

“Our experience over the past 40-plus years of introducing new synthetic fluids technologies into the industrial lubricant marketplace brings a host of fluid chemistries that will blend perfectly into Shell’s global lubricant portfolio,” ACT President and co-owner Kevin Kovanda said in the news release.

The acquisition is effective immediately, though Shell has contracted with ACT to continue to operate the business on its behalf for a transitional period. Staffing needs for the business will be assessed during the transitional period, and ACT employees will be informed of potential employment opportunities with Shell as they are determined, the company stated.

Pennzoil-Quaker State Co. does business as SOPUS Products, a Shell Oil Co. subsidiary that comprises Shell’s U.S. lubricants business.