Sun Chemical's Shares In Kodak Polychrome Graphics Redeemed
FORT LEE, N.J.—Sun Chemical Corporation today announced that Eastman Kodak Company will become the sole owner of graphic arts supplier Kodak Polychrome Graphics (KPG) through redemption of Sun Chemical Corporation's 50 percent interest in the joint venture. Completion of the deal, which will exceed $800 million in cash, is expected in April. Currently, Kodak and Sun Chemical each own half of KPG, a joint venture established in 1998.
"Since its inception, KPG has grown into a highly successful leader in the graphic arts market based on a sound strategy and a world-class team, and is highly valued by both partners," said Wes Lucas, chairman, president and CEO of Sun Chemical Corporation. "However, with the end of the joint venture agreement coming in the near future, both Sun Chemical and Kodak agreed that now is an excellent time to stake out a clear future for KPG. The redemption of these shares creates the opportunity for Sun Chemical to aggressively pursue its growth strategies."
"Sun Chemical is the largest player in inks, coatings and pigments, and this transaction will fund strategic growth in our core markets, as well as new technologies that are key to us," Lucas said.
As part of its plans, Sun Chemical recently purchased Rycoline, Inc., which manufactures pressroom consumables such as press blankets and fountain solutions. This is part of its strategy to offer a "total pressroom solution." Sun Chemical also has begun offering Smart Colour™, a complete color solution with such benefits as color definition and control systems backed by a library of over 70,000 colors. It can be used all the way through the graphic reproduction process, from designer to press operator.
Under the SunJet™ name, Sun Chemical has long been a leader in supplying digital and UV inks for use by manufacturers of inkjet printers. Sun Chemical also launched plans to introduce a high-speed, fixed-array inkjet printer called FastJet™, designed to print four-color corrugated packaging.
Sun Chemical recently formed Sun Chemical Security®, which offers a variety of security solutions for branded consumer goods and documents such as currency and other financial instruments. In 2004, the security group also acquired the assets of Veritec Group, Inc., which provides technology and services to protect product integrity and brand security.
Through recent acquisitions, such as Bayer's pigments business, Sun Chemical also continues to grow as the industry leader in pigments used in a wide variety of applications such as inks, paints, cosmetics and plastics.
As part of the agreement, existing sales and distribution arrangements between KPG and Sun Chemical will remain in place. Lucas said Sun Chemical and Kodak plan to continue developing cooperative opportunities to service mutual customers. "Based on our successful history of collaboration, we expect to continue this fruitful relationship," he said.
Final value for redemption of the shares will be confirmed when the deal is completed in April. It will involve cash payments over future years.