NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. -- American Vanguard Corporation and BASF Aktiengesellschaft, Ludwigshafen, Germany today announced that BASF sold the global Counter(R) insecticide product line and the Lock 'n Load(R) closed delivery system to AMVAC Chemical Corporation, a subsidiary of American Vanguard.



The Counter product line consists of the active ingredient terbufos, the trademark Counter, the manufacturing and formulation know-how, registration rights, intellectual property rights and inventories.

Counter generated sales of approximately $25 million in 2005. First introduced in 1974, it is a systemic insecticide-nematicide registered in more than 20 countries, with the main markets in North and Latin America. It is used on agricultural crops, mainly corn, bananas sugar beets and coffee to protect against various insect pests.



Lock 'n Load is a patented, closed delivery system for granular products that was first marketed in the late eighties. Currently Counter and Phorate, a product AMVAC acquired from BASF in 2005, are marketed in Lock 'n Load. Bayer CropScience LLP has licensed this technology and is marketing their Aldicarb and Ethoprop products in Lock 'n Load in the USA.



Eric Wintemute, president and CEO of American Vanguard, said, "This acquisition is our largest to date, and brings a complementary product line and delivery system to American Vanguard. Counter strongly complements the Thimet(R) (phorate) insecticide business we acquired from BASF in November of last year.



"We have been very pleased with Thimet's performance over the last year and are enthusiastic about the prospects for Counter, which we will begin selling immediately. This acquisition reflects the continued execution of our growth strategy to acquire and license niche product lines from larger companies in our industry.



"Additionally, the Lock 'n Load closed delivery system offers terrific synergies with our SmartBox(R) delivery system, and we are quickly emerging as a leading owner and provider of safe granular delivery technology."



Mike Heinz, President of the BASF Agricultural Products division, stated, "This divestiture reflects our ongoing review of BASF's Agricultural Products portfolio. Like Thimet, Counter offers limited synergy for BASF, and is a better strategic fit for AMVAC. This is also the case with the Lock 'n Load system, which pairs well with AMVAC's SmartBox."



With sales of EUR 3,298 million in 2005, BASF's Agricultural Products division is a leader in crop protection and a strong partner to the farming industry providing well-established and innovative fungicides, insecticides and herbicides.



BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products, agricultural products and fine chemicals to crude oil and natural gas. BASF has more than 95,000 employees and posted sales of more than EUR 42.7 billion in 2005.

American Vanguard Corporation is a diversified specialty and agricultural products company that develops and markets products for crop protection and management, turf and ornamentals management, and public and animal health. The company's basic strategy is to acquire and license brand name, niche product lines from larger companies that divest mature products to focus on newly discovered molecules.



SOURCE: American Vanguard Corporation via Business Wire.