- Inauguration of two new plants: fluorinated polymers (Kynar®), and rheology additives (Coatex)
- Creation of a Research and Development Center
Thierry Le Hénaff, Chairman and CEO of Arkema, is to inaugurate on Wednesday October 12th two new plants for fluorinated polymers and rheology additives on the Changshu industrial platform in the presence of the Chinese authorities. At the same time, Arkema will also lay the foundation stone of its future Research and Development Center in China, the Group’s second such center in Asia.
These announcements confirm the Group’s firm growth objectives in Asia, which include achieving 25% of its sales on this continent by 2015, half of which in China.
Ideally located 120 km south of Shanghai, the Changshu industrial platform is now Arkema’s largest manufacturing site in the world. It represents Arkema’s main industrial base in China, with productions in many specialty chemicals: fluorogases, fluorinated polymers, specialty polyamides, acrylic derivatives, organic peroxides, etc.
Two plants started successfully earlier this year
The new plant dedicated to the production of fluorinated polymers under the Kynar® brand name was started successfully in Changshu in the spring of this year. It helps us partner the development of our customers in Asia, and fulfil more effectively the fast-growing demand in the paint, offshore, and chemical engineering markets, as well as in emerging applications such as batteries, photovoltaics and water treatment.
Arkema is already planning to increase by 50% this new plant’s capacity by the summer of 2012.
With the startup in early August of the rheology additives plant, Coatex, an Arkema subsidiary, now has production capacities for the paint and coating, cement, paper, and mineral processing markets in Asia.
A second Research and Development Center in Asia
The future Changshu Research and Development Center will offer both a geographic and a technical fit with the Group’s other research centers, in particular the Kyoto center in Japan. It will help boost the development or adaptation of products and solutions provided by Arkema to its customers in China and South-East Asia in the fast-growing markets of new energies, cable, electronics, automotive, and sports.
From 2012 researchers at the new center will also be able to assist with the Group’s future engineering projects in Asia.
Other projects underway in Changshu over the next few years
Arkema’s growth on the Changshu platform will continue in the coming years, in particular with an extension in production capacities at the HFC 125 fluorogas plant, the startup of a plant manufacturing waterborne emulsions for paint, and a threefold capacity increase at the specialty polyamide plant. These various projects should be completed around late 2012/early 2013.
A global chemical company and France’s leading chemicals producer, Arkema is building the future of the chemical industry every day. Deploying a responsible, innovation-based approach, we produce state-of-the-art specialty chemicals that provide customers with practical solutions to such challenges as climate change, access to drinking water, the future of energy, fossil fuel preservation and the need for lighter materials. With operations in more than 40 countries, 15,700 employees and 9 research centers, Arkema generated annual revenue of €5.9 billion in 2010, and holds leadership positions in all its markets with a portfolio of internationally recognized brands. The world is our inspiration.