Brenntag strengthens platform in Africa with acquisition of Desbro Group

renntag, the global market leader in chemical distribution, entered into an agreement to acquire the Desbro Group in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and the UAE. The company, headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, is one of the largest and long-standing distributors in East Africa. The Group offers a broad portfolio of commodities and specialty chemicals to diverse strategic customer industries in East Africa and the Middle East such as Plastics, Coatings & Construction, Textile, Water Treatment and increasingly Life Sciences.

Karsten Beckmann, Member of the Board of Management of Brenntag Group and CEO Brenntag Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA): “With Desbro we are acquiring a leading and well respected market player. The company provides us the needed market expertise, organization and infrastructure to build on our strategy to claim outstanding Africa coverage. Combined with Brenntag’s knowhow and existing product and supplier portfolio we will create an overall presence and offering in both Africa and the Middle East.”

Anthony Gerace, Brenntag Group’s Managing Director Mergers & Acquisitions: “East Africa is a sizeable market for chemical distribution to which Brenntag now gains access via this acquisition. We will now be in a position to extend the cooperation with our existing suppliers and attract additional suppliers in the region to support them in growing their customer base. In particular, we see high potential to accelerate the growth of our Material Science business and to improve the market share in Life Sciences.”

The acquired business generated sales of 70 million EUR in the financial year 2017. Closing of the transaction is subject to certain contractual closing conditions and regulatory approvals and is expected to occur in the first quarter 2019.