Orica Becomes Australia’s Largest Specialty Polymer Distributor Through Marplex Acquisition

Orica Limited today announced it would further its successful Chemnet business through the acquisition of the Marplex Group of companies for a total enterprise value of $44 million.

Marplex is a leading supplier of speciality engineering compounds and alloys in Australia and New Zealand with sales revenue of $65 million.

Following the acquisitions of Fernz, Welvic and Qenos Engineering Polymers over the last 18 months, the acquisition of Marplex makes Orica Australia's largest distributor of speciality polymers. The acquisition will be effective as of 1 September 2004.

Marplex Managing Director, Peter Brooksbank, will remain with the business going forward.

Orica MD and CEO, Malcolm Broomhead, had said that the acquisition would grow and enhance Orica's existing polymers distribution and compounding business, enabling Orica to provide its customers with a full range of speciality engineering polymers.

"We are confident that Marplex can continue to grow sales and earnings strongly over the next few years, based on its long-standing relationships with key global suppliers and its excellent reputation in the market for customer service.

"Orica's focus in the polymers area has been to acquire and grow distribution businesses based on value-adding and providing superior levels of service to customers," he said.

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