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U.S. specialty chemicals company Lubrizol Corp. (LZ) is still in the running to buy German rival Cognis GmbH, people familiar with the situation told Dow Jones Newswires Monday.
"Contrary to various reports, Lubrizol is still -- as before -- interested in Cognis," one person said.
Another person familiar with the matter said Lubrizol is still seeking financing for the reported sale price of more than EUR3 billion.
Cognis was spun off of German household consumer products maker Henkel AG & Co. KGaA (HEN.XE) and is owned by Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and London-based private equity firm Permira who bought the company for EUR2.5 billion in 2001.
German chemicals company BASF SE (BAS.XE) is conducting due diligence of Cognis, another person familiar with the bid process has told Dow Jones. BASF is the most likely buyer because of its financial strength, people said.
Neither Goldman Sachs or Permira would comment on the information Monday.
In March, Cognis said it swung to a net profit of EUR47 million for the first quarter compared with a loss of EUR33 million in the same period last year.
Company websites: http://www.basf.com
-By Marietta Cauchi and Eyk Henning, Dow Jones Newswires; +49 69 29 725 500, firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com