Tronox Ltd., a global mining and inorganic chemicals company headquartered in Stamford, received conditional approval from the European Commission for its approximately $1.7 billion proposed acquisition of the titanium dioxide business from the Saudi Arabian company Cristal.
According to Tronox, the approval is contingent upon its divestiture of the paper-laminate product grade currently supplied to European customers from its Botlek facility in the Netherlands. Tronox added that it would submit a definitive agreement with a counterparty for the divestiture to satisfy the European Commission’s remedial requirements. The European conditional approval comes after the commission raised concerns about the acquisition in March.
Tronox is still awaiting regulatory approval from the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, which the Stamford firm had sued in January over the commission’s opposition to the deal. Meanwhile, the company has already received approval from the governments of Saudi Arabia, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, China, Turkey and Colombia.
“Given our ability to meet the European Commission’s narrow condition, I anticipate we will quickly receive final approval of the proposed remedy,” said Jeffry N. Quinn, president and CEO of Tronox. “It is our intent to proceed immediately to closing the Cristal acquisition as soon as we receive final approval from the European authorities. We see no reason to further delay this highly synergistic combination that is designed to increase asset utilization, lower our cost position, unlock incremental product volumes to serve growing global markets and create significant long-term value for our customers and shareholders.”