Rumours this week that French ingredients company Rhodia has received informal bids from its European rivals DSM and BASF remained confused on Tuesday. Shares in Rhodia rose 19 per cent following the rumours earlier this week. As a result, the French COB (Commission des Operations de Bourse) demanded that all companies involved in the rumour clarify their positions. Rhodia denied all and in a statement on Monday claimed, "In accordance with the request received today from the Commission des Opérations de Bourse, Rhodia states that it has not been approached by either BASF nor or by DSM." In contrast, the DSM camp stated,"DSM confirms that it has enquired about Aventis' position in regard of its shareholding in Rhodia."DSM did however add, "there is currently no contact between DSM and Rhodia". Aventis, the Franco-German pharmaceuticals group that controls 25 per cent of Rhodia shares, confirmed the DSM statement. " Aventis has recently been contacted on a preliminary basis about the sale of Rhodia shares owned by Aventis. These shares represent approximately 25% of the capital of Rhodia; they are linked to bonds issued by Aventis in 1999, which could be exchanged into Rhodia shares." BASF denied it was interested in Rhodia. "We are not interested in Rhodia and did not make an offer," BASF said. According to a report in the Financial Times DSM offered E14 a share in equity and cash, valuing the company at E2.5bn, while BASF suggested to Aventis it would pay E12 a share in cash, said Les Echos. DSM is now understood to have lowered its offer to EE12 per share. DSM said this week, "In the context of the implementation of its strategy 'Vision 2005' DSM is evaluating various options to reinforce its business portfolio. In that respect DSM has had and will have contacts with many companies." A spokesman for Rhodia remained adamant on Tuesday when he told FoodNavigator.com, "I have absolutely nothing to say about the rumours. No comment."