(Reuters) - Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corp (4188.T) will buy a majority stake in Taiyo Nippon Sanso (4091.T) for about 100 billion yen ($980 million) to tap the rising U.S. demand for nitrogen and other gases used in energy production, the Nikkei reported.
Mitsubishi Chemical, which raised its interest in the Taiyo Nippon to 27 percent from 15 percent in October, will mount a tender offer this year to lift its stake above 50 percent, the business daily said.
The acquisition is expected to be announced on Tuesday in a joint news conference, the daily said. Taiyo Nippon Sanso will remain listed, the daily said.
Taiyo Nippon supplies industrial gases, including nitrogen, which is required in large quantities when producing chemicals such as ethylene from shale gas. Industrial gases are used at shale gas extraction sites as well.
After acquiring Taiyo Nippon Sanso, Mitsubishi Chemical will supply nitrogen and other gases to U.S. facilities built in partnership with Dow Chemical DOW.N to produce acrylic resin materials, the newspaper said.
Mitsubishi Chemical plans to install Taiyo Nippon Sanso gas production equipment at U.S. chemical plants of other companies.
($1 = 102.1150 Japanese Yen)
Reporting By Sneha Banerjee in Bangalore; Editing by Don Sebastian