LyondellBasell Industries is in talks to acquire Braskem, a petrochemicals company based in Brazil.
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, sources close to the matter said the companies are only in the early stages of takeover talks. But if it goes through, the deal would be substantial. Braskem currently has a market value of about $11.4 billion while LyondellBasell is worth $40 billion.
The deal would also be the second-largest M&A transaction in Brazilian history.
Brasekm has a portfolio similar to LyondellBasell including a wide range of plastics, agrochemicals, rubber and lubricants.
Since Dow and DuPont merged into one company, LyondellBasell has risen to the No. 2 spot for chemical companies in the U.S.
Less than 10 years ago, LyondellBasell was mired in debt, bankrupt and laying off thousands of workers. Now the company is posting profits in the billions each year and expanding rapidly along with the Gulf Coast with several chemical plants in construction or being planned.