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Polartech Plant Opens in India

Polartech India has opened a new blending plant in Cherlapally, Hyderabad, after celebrating its completion with a traditional Puja ceremony. The new plant, which came onstream in December, is a significant step up from the companys prior site and was designed using Vaastu Shastra, the traditional Hindu principles of planning and architecture. It has capacity to blend up to 30,000 metric tons of products per year. The 12 blending vessels and six reactor vessels are all constructed from stainless steel and mounted on start-of-the-art load cells to ensure recipe management and quality control.

The company is a subsidiary of Polartech Ltd., a Manchester,England, based supplier of metalworking fluids, additive components and packages, related products and services to lubricant and chemical companies worldwide.

Since the creation of Polartech India Pvt. Ltd. in 1999, we have experienced significant year on year growth, which has already forced us to expand once before, said V.S. Ramanathan, sales director.With completion of this project Ibelieve that Polartech is now positioned as akey player in the Indian metalworking fluid market.

Chemtura Hauls in Hatco, Anderol

Chemtura Corp. has signed a letter of intent to acquire Kaufman Holdings Corp., in acash transaction expected to close in this quarter.The deal will bring Chemtura two of the worlds leading suppliers of synthetic lubricants: Hatco Corp. and Anderol Inc.

Through this transaction, Chemtura would gain strong positions in two exciting new markets: high-growth lubricants for CFC-free refrigeration compressors, and high-purity synthetics, said Chemtura Chairman and CEO Robert L. Wood. Chemtura has the global scale and specialty chemical expertise needed to maximize the potential of these dynamic businesses,noted Alex Kaufman, president andCEO of Kaufman Holdings.

Privately held Kaufman Holdings had 2006 revenues in excess of $200 million. It has 300 employees and manufacturing facilities in Fords and East Hanover,N.J., and Oakville, Canada. Hatco is known for its sophisticated synthetic esters used for technically demanding applications, and boasts of supplying more than half of the polyol ester base stock used to makejet turbine oils worldwide. Sister company Anderol supplies synthetic lubricants used in aviation and industrial applications such as compressors, bearings, gear-boxes and food-grade machinery. It also markets products under the Royal brand name.

Chemtura, a $3.9 billion chemical company headquartered in Middlebury, Conn., already has a broad portfolio of synthetic lubricants, including polyalphaolefins, esters, polyalkylene glycols and phosphate esters. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

New Leaf for Arizona Chemical

International Paper has announced that its Arizona Chemical business, whose pine-derived chemicals are used to make synthetic lubricants, greases, metalworking fluids and other products, will be sold to Rhone Capital III L.P. for $485 million.

Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., Arizona Chemical supplies oleo-chemicals such as esters, distilled tall oils used in metalworking fluids, castor oil derivatives for making grease, and fatty acids used in many other lubricants. It has 11 manufacturing facilities worldwide, in Florida, Georgia, Ohio, and in England, France, Finland and Sweden, plus research facilities in the Netherlands and Savannah, Ga. It employs almost 1,500 people, and had 2005 revenues of nearly $700 million.

The buyer,Rhone Capital, is a private equity fund specializing in mid-market leveraged buyouts, recapitalizations and partnerships. As part of the deal, International Paper will acquire a 10 percent interest in the acquisition vehicle that Rhone Capital forms to buy Arizona Chemical.

United Fuel Buys Ackerly

United Fuel &Energy Corp., of Houston, has agreed to buy fellow Texan company Ackerly Oil Co. Inc., based in Big Spring. The deal gives United Fuel a bulk plant for lubricants and other products near one of its suppliers. Terms of the transaction, which closed in December,were not disclosed.

Ackerly distributes lubricants and fuels to customers in west Texas, and operates under the trade name Trio Fuel. The assets United Fuel purchased included a bulk plant in Big Spring,tanks, inventory and truck fleet. United Fuel also distributes fuels and lubricants, primarily to rural markets in Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. With 275 full-time employees, it plans to continue to grow through strategic acquisitions.

Barrett Launches Consultancy

After 40-plus years in the industry,almost 30 of them related to lubricants and lubrication, Charles ChuckBarrett has retired from BP and formed Consultive Services Co. The firm, based in Hoffman Estates, Ill., will focus on delivering to customers abroad experience in national and international market development, sales and technical support. Areas of expertise include lubricants, lubrication, maintenance and process-related applications, and targeted industries range from aerospace through wind energy gy,Barrettsaid. E-mail:

Valvoline Marks 787th Outlet

Valvoline Instant Oil Change, the nations second-largest quick-lube chain, has opened its 500th franchised service center. This brings the number of its company owned and franchised service centers to 787. The milestone service center, in Plainville, Conn., is owned and operated by Hartford-based Galena Associates. Owned by brothers Michael and Paul John Ferri, Galena manages 59 VIOC outlets in New York, Pennsylvania and Connecticut.

According to National Oil &Lube News, Shell Oils Jiffy Lube chain remains by far the countrys largest, with some 2,164 franchised and company-owned stores operating last year.

Faces in the News

Warren D. Knowlton is the new CEO of Graham Packaging Co., the York, Pa., based global supplier of plastic containers. Formerly with Morgan Crucible PLC, he takes over from Philip R. Yates, who retired as CEO but remains as chairman of the companys board. In his eight years as CEO, Yates led the companys expansion from $500 million in sales to more than $2.5 billion annually.

Nick Janakiefski has joined Lambent Technologies as regional sales manager,Ohio Valley. Janakiefski has spent over 20 years in technical service, sales and marketing in the chemical industry,and most recently was with Cognis Corp.

Christine Furlong is the new Midwest territory sales manager for Polaris Laboratories, based in Chicago; she previously was with Valvoline. Polaris also named Robert Chumley as Southwest territory sales manager,based in Houston, and Cathy Smith as Western territory sales manager. Chumley joined the laboratory services company in 2004, while Smith, based in Denver,most recently was with Siegel Oil Co.

Dover Chemical Corp. has named James D. Williamson as regional sales manager for the Northeast United States and Robert E. Ren as regional sales manager for the Midwest. The company also named Trisha L. Gambs to be its Southeast sales representative.

Acme-Hardesty Co., the Blue Bell, Pa., headquartered distributor of oleochemicals, has named Gary Martin as supply chain manager, directing its inventory management and demand planning activities from port of origin to customer delivery. His work experience includes positions with Chemtura and Ciba Specialty Chemicals.

Royal Manufacturing Co. has hired Steve Humphreys as director of technical services, including responsibility for research and development activities and technical assistance for operations and production. Humphreys has nearly 20 years experience, over 15 of them in formulating lubricants and greases.

The National Fluid Power Association named Eric Lanke as its new executive director,effective Jan. 22. A Certified Association Executive, Lanke has over 13 years of experience in association management;he succeeds Linda Western who retires from the Milwaukee-based trade association this month.

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