Ecolab resolves DOJ concerns to acquire Champion

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Ecolab Inc., a cleaning, food safety and pest-control services company based in St. Paul, has reached a deal with federal regulators to move forward with its proposed $2.16 billion acquisition of Texas-based Champion Technologies Inc., the Star Tribune reports.

The U.S. Department of Justice says the agreement requires selling Champion's chemical management services for deepwater wells in the Gulf of Mexico in order to resolve antitrust concerns. The settlement affects about 3 percent of Champion's business.

After months of negotiations, Ecolab expects to complete the transaction within the next few days, according to a company news release.

“We are pleased to have reached an agreement with DOJ on this matter,” Douglas Baker, Ecolab’s chairman and chief executive officer, said in the statement. "Champion strengthens our position in the fast-growing oil and gas services industry. It bolsters our ability to better serve customers by bringing important and complementary geographic and technology strengths to our Global Energy business — particularly in the upstream production area — and enables us to more fully capitalize on the significant developing oil and gas market opportunities."

Ecolab first announced it was buying Champion for $2.2 billion, a specialty chemical maker, last October. Terms of the purchase agreement were amended in December, which dropped the value of the deal to $2.16 billion.

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