president awards national science, technology medals

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  • News of the Week

    Dainippon bids for Reichhold Chemicals Yet another U.S. chemical company is under attack from a foreign firm in a takeover attempt. The invader this time comes from Japan.

    Through its wholly owned sub-sidiary DIC Holdings, Dainippon Ink & Chemicals surprised Reich-hold Chemicals last week with a tender offer to acquire the compa-ny for $52lli a share. The day be-fore the offer, Reichhold's stock closed at $42V2. But the next morn-ing it jumped to $57%, indicating that arbitrageurs were anticipating an even better offer.

    Reichhold chairman C. Robert Powell advised stockholders last week to postpone any decision on the offer until the board finished its evaluation.

    The offer totaling $473 million is conditioned on DIC's acquiring a majority ownership in Reichhold. Currently, it owns about 4.5% of Reichhold's outstanding shares. A more important condition is that Reichhold's board of directors buy back the company's preferred stock purchase rights or at least be satis-fied that these rights are not appli-cable to a merger.

    Earlier this year, Reichhold 's board took "poison pill" measures against takeover attempts. Among them were stockholder rights to pur-chase stock in Reichhold or the sur-viving company at half the stock price.

    To force Reichhold into a move, DIC Holdings says it is filing a law-suit against Reichhold and its di-rectors in Delaware to seek, among other things, the redemption of Reichhold's poison pill rights and a declaration that certain antitakeover provisions in Reichhold's charter are invalid.

    If the tender offer is successful, DIC will propose a second-step merger in which the Reichhold shares not tendered will be con-verted to cash equal to the price paid in the tender offer.

    Acquisition of Reichhold would give Dainippon a raw materials source of printing ink resins and would further establish Dainippon as a force in U.S. printing inks. In

    addition, there are many parallels between the product lines of the two companies, especially in resins.

    The Dainippon-Reichhold relation-ship stretches back to the 1950s when Kawamura Inc., the predecessor Jap-anese company, formed a licensing agreement with Reichhold to enter synthethic resins. This was accom-plished through a joint venture Japan Reichhold Chemical Co. In 1962, Kawamura acquired the Reich-hold interest and became the present Dainippon Ink & Chemicals. D

    Colorado to restrict gasoline use in winter This week urban Colorado motor-ists are expected to become the first in the nation to be barred from us-ing gasoline in winter. Beginning this December, they will be required to use high-oxygenated fuels, such as gasohol (90% gasoline, 10% etha-nol) or gasoline containing 8% meth-yl tert-butyl ether (MTBE), from Dec. 1 to March 1 to reduce airborne carbon monoxide levels.

    Colorado is taking this step to comply more closely with the Dec. 31 deadline for meeting the Clean Air Act's carbon monoxide standard. The state faces a "possible loss of about $30 million per year, primari-ly a loss of highway funds," for not meeting the deadline, Ted W. Holl-man, an air pollution control spe-cialist in the Colorado Department of Health, says.

    Dale M. Wells, an environmental engineer in the Environmental Pro-tection Agency's Region 8 office in Denver, says the switch to oxygen-ated fuels "is extremely appropri-ate, especially for Denver." At high altitudes where the air is thin-ner, the fuel mixture tends to be richer, and more pollutants are emitted.

    "Results of a four-year study of oxygenated fuels, funded by EPA, are very encouraging," Wells says. Decreases in carbon monoxide lev-els ranged from 15 to 30%, depend-ing on the type of fuel and vehicle.

    Seventy-five per cent of Colora-do's population lives in the Front Range area, which is affected by the new ruling. Hollman says sup-

    plies of gasohol and MTBE are suf-ficient, and increases in annual fuel costs to motorists are estimated at less than $5.00 per year.

    Lynn E. Hohensee, a spokesman for Conoco Oil Co., the major fuel supplier to Colorado, says the com-pany will review its options after June 29, the date the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission is expected to finalize the ruling. He says Conoco will "seek some kind of relief from the Dec. 1 deadline for switching fuels." This is a "high-ly unreasonable date for us because we have to construct additional re-fining facilities and acquire the feed-stocks," he explains. D

    President awards national science, technology medals

    President Reagan awarded 20 Nation-al Medals of Science and four Nation-al Medals of Technology during cere-monies in the White House rose garden last Thursday. The medals represent the nation's highest honor for achieve-ment in mathematics, science engi-neering, and technology.

    Among this year's recipients, there are a number of chemists, a chemical engineer, and professionals active in chemically related fields. They in-clude:

    Phillip H. Abelson, geochemist and former editor of Science.

    R> Byron Bird, professor of chemi-cal engineering at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

    Harry Eagle, director of the Cancer Research Center at Albert Einstein Col-lege of Medicine.

    John E. Franz, distinguished fellow at Monsanto.

    William S. Johnson, professor emer-itus at Stanford University.

    H. Gobind Khorana, professor of bi-ology and chemistry at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

    Paul C. Lauterbur, professor at the University of Illinois' College of Medicine.

    Rita Levi-Montalcini, director of the Laboratory of Cell Bioiogy in Rome, Italy.

    Walter H. Stockmayer, professor emeritus at Dartmouth College.

    Max Tishler, professor emeritus at Wesleyan University.

    8 June 29, 1987 C&EN

    President awards national science, technology medals


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