Firm looks to bolster R&D by acquiring AZ Electronic Materials

The speciality chemicals arm of Merck KGaA has agreed to buy out AZ Electronic Materials for £1.6 billion in cash. AZ makes and develops materials and components to supply the electronics industry, which Merck sees as an important growth area. The deal also strengthens Merck’s base in Asia, where 60% of AZ’s 1100 employees are based.

‘AZ has strong market positions, along with a focused product development capability: by combining with Merck, these two attributes will reinforce long term growth opportunities,’ said AZ’s chairman, John Whybrow.