DUESSELDORF, Germany, Dec 9 (Reuters) - German chemicals group Evonik is nearing the purchase of J.M. Huber Corp.'s silica unit for $630 million to widen its offering of specialized chemicals, a person familiar with the deal told Reuters on Friday.
Evonik's supervisory board of non-executive directors will meet on Friday to decide on the transaction, seeking to boost Evonik's own silica business which caters mainly to tyremakers.
The deal will help Evonik sell versatile silica additives to a wider customer base, including makers of tooth paste, animal feed and paints and will give it better access to Asian markets. Evonik's silica are mainly used to improve the wet grip of tyres.
A spokesman for Evonik confirmed its interest in the J.M. Huber business and that the board was due to meet, adding there have been talks. (Reporting by Matthias Inverardi; Writing by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Maria Sheahan and Christoph Steitz)