CLEVELAND - Ferro Corp., Mayfield Heights, OH, has signed a definitive agreement with the shareholders of Barcelona-based Nubiola Pigmentos (Nubiola) to acquire 100% of the equity of Nubiola, on a cash-free and debt-free basis, for €146 million. The transaction will be funded with excess cash and a draw on Ferro’s existing revolving credit facility. The transaction is expected to close within the next 60 days, subject to customary closing conditions.

Nubiola is a worldwide producer of specialty inorganic pigments and the world’s largest producer of ultramarine blue. Other products include specialty iron oxides, chrome oxide greens and corrosion inhibitors. Nubiola generated 2014 annual sales of $119 million, based on the current euro exchange rate, and achieved compound annual growth of 4.1% over the last three years. The 101-year-old, family-owned company employs approximately 750 people, including temporary employees, and has production facilities in Spain, Colombia, Romania, and India and a joint venture in China. Nubiola sells into more than 85 countries. The majority of Nubiola’s customers serve the plastics and construction industries.

Commenting on the proposed transaction, Peter Thomas, Chairman, President and CEO of Ferro Corp., said, “Nubiola is an excellent strategic fit with Ferro, as we strengthen our position as a global color solutions provider. The acquisition will significantly expand our product portfolio and geographic footprint and more than triple the size of our addressable market in inorganic pigments to greater than $1 billion. Nubiola will bring technology leadership on a global scale in ultramarine blue, along with a range of other high-value pigment and corrosion-inhibitor product lines."

Ferro is embarking on the growth phase of its value-creation strategy and is seeking to expand sales in emerging markets, accelerate product development efforts, and acquire businesses that build upon its positions in glass-based coatings and color solutions. The company is a leading global supplier of technology-based performance materials, including glass-based coatings, pigments and colors, and polishing materials. Ferro products are sold into the building and construction, automotive, appliances, electronics, household furnishings, and industrial products markets. The company has approximately 4,000 employees globally and reported 2014 sales of $1.1 billion. It currently has 33 manufacturing sites around the world and a broad customer base in more than 100 countries.