Showa Denko (SDK) has decided to acquire a high-purity chlorine business in Taiwan, in order to strengthen its special material gas business.

Taiwan Showa Chemicals Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (TSCM), a subsidiary of SDK, has come to a general agreement with Air Products San Fu Co., Ltd. (APSF), a subsidiary of Air Products and Chemicals Inc., to acquire APSF’s high-purity chlorine business including its production facility located in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, by transfer, setting the end of August 2014 as the current target date.

High purity chlorine is a special material gas used mainly as an etching gas in the manufacture of semiconductors and LCDs. In the manufacture of semiconductors, a variety of special material gases including high-purity chlorine are used to cope with the progress of miniaturisation of electronic devices. Therefore, the demand for high-purity chlorine for this use is expected to remain stable. Moreover, the demand for high-purity chlorine used as an etching gas in the manufacture of LCDs is expected to increase in line with the expanding production of LCDs. In consequence, the annual market size of high-purity chlorine is expected to be about 2,000 tonnes in 2015.

The Showa Denko Group has a production facility of high-purity chlorine with annual production capacity of 1,000 tonnes in its Kawasaki Plant. By having additional high-purity chlorine production facility in Taiwan, SDK Group is ready to ensure further stable supply of high-purity chlorine to the growing market in East Asia including China and Taiwan.

The Showa Denko Group classifies its semiconductor-processing high-purity gas business, which includes high-purity chlorine, into the “Growth” category of its business portfolio specified in the ongoing medium term consolidated business plan “PEGASUS Phase II.” The SDK Group will accelerate the business expansion of its high-purity gases in the Asian market throughout the period of PEGASUS Phase II that lasts to the end of 2015.