Gulf Resources & Chemical Co. has sold Great Salt Lake Minerals & Chemical Co. to GSL Acquisition Corp., headed by New York investor George Harris, for $34.5 million.
GSLM&C is located west of Ogden. Harris will become chairman of the firm and Peter Behrens will continue as president, a post he has held for several years. Behrens, who is a principal in the acquiring company, declined to name the other principals in GSL Acquisition. The company employs 290 people.Behrens said an agreement for the sale was signed last weekend.
The company produces potassium sulphate for fertilizer products and salt for road and agricultural use. Behrens said sulphate of potash is used for high value crops where there is a high acid content in the soil.
Asked about the status of his company, Behrens said the lake is higher than company officials would like for efficient recovery of the minerals, but it is five feet lower than in 1984, thanks mainly to the Great Salt Lake pumping project.
Some of the company's dikes were damaged by the high water, but they have been repaired and he hopes in three years the plant will reach capacity in sulphate production.
GSLM&C history dates back to 1967 when Lithium Corp of America tried to extract lithium from the lake brines. LCA later was joined by Salzdetfurth, A.G., Hanover, West Germany, with an emphasis on potash recovery.
In the late 1960s, the operation was acquired by Gulf Resources, then based in Houston. High start-up costs in the early 1970s forced Salzdetfurth out of the business, Behrens said.