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Chesebrough to Sell Polymer Unit

April 11, 1986

WESTPORT, Conn. (AP) _ Chesebrough-Pond’s Inc. said today that it had reached agreements in principle to sell its Polymer Corp. subsidiary in two transactions totaling more than $100 million.

The Westport-based chemical, consumer and health products company said it planned to sell Polymer Corp., except its coating powder business, in a leveraged buyout by the unit’s senior management and a company owned by Quadrex Securities Corp., a privately held merchant and investment bank.

The net assets of its coating powders business will be sold to Morton Thiokol Inc., according to the agreement. The company did not release the price of each transaction individually. Chesebrough said in a statement that it expects the sales to be completed by June 30.

A Chesebrough spokeswoman said Polymer was sold because it did not fit the company’s long-term strategy. Proceeds of the sale will be used to reduce debt incurred in the March 1984, $1.25 billion acquisition of the Stauffer Chemical Co., she said.

Chesebrough purchased Polymer, headquartered in Reading, Pa., for $95 million in July 1984. The unit’s 1985 sales were $109.2 million, about 4 percent of the company’s 1985 sales of $2.7 billion, while its operating income plunged about 50 percent from the previous year to $2.3 million.

Since the Stauffer purchase, Chesebrough has used divestitures, the reversion of pension funds, sale-leaseback programs and the repatriation of overseas funds to reduce its debt by $1.2 billion. About one-third of the funds have come from divestitures.

Its best-known lines are consumer products including Vaseline petroleum jelly; Pond’s facial products; Ragu Foods; and Bass shoes.

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