KRATON Sold...Again

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A Belpre chemical plant has been sold for the second time in three years, but the manager says not even the name will change this time.

Houston-based Texas Pacific group plans to acquire the Kraton Polymers group, including its plant in Belpre. Kraton, which has been owned by Ripple-Wood holdings, purchased the former Shell Chemical Plant in 2001.

With more than 400 workers, it's been Ripplewood's only plant in the United States.

“We have a substantial investment in the people and knowledge and technology of our plant, which would be hard to duplicate overseas. In fact, under Ripplewood, we plan to expand the Belpre plant, and we expect some projects we have in mind to go forward with TPG as well,” says Bob Roesch.

The sale is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Kraton's Belpre operation has more than 450 employees.