Clariant says Asia holds the key to growth

By Robert Grace
Associate Publisher & Business Development Director

Published: April 23, 2014 3:52 pm ET
Updated: April 23, 2014 3:54 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Materials, Asia, Materials Suppliers, CHINAPLAS
Companies & Associations Clariant International Ltd.

SHANGHAI — Clariant AG is based in Switzerland, but its eyes are firmly focused further east.

“Our future lies in Asia,” declared Christian Kohlpaintner, a member of the executive committee of the multinational specialty chemicals supplier, in Shanghai on April 22. He was addressing a group of (mostly Chinese) media representatives at a Clariant press event on the day before the Chinaplas 2014 trade show opened.

Kohlpaintner pointed out how the company's sales in the Greater China region (which includes South Korea, by Clariant's definition) increased by 7.3 percent last year, to 646 million Swiss francs ($730 million). Its 1,500 employees in China represent 8 percent of Clariant's global workforce of just over 18,000. The broader Asia Pacific region accounted for 23 percent of the firm's SwF 6.08 billion ($6.87 billion) in 2013 sales. And company officials only expect those percentages to rise.

That growth is being driven in part by aggressive investments in the region, which company officials outlined at the media event. While Kohlpaintner would not be drawn out on specifics about these various projects, he did say that if all the announced expansions proceed as planned, they will represent a total investment in “the low double-digit millions” of Swiss francs.

Here's a snapshot of Clariant's activity in the region:

• Its Masterbatches business unit — which has four production units and two sales offices in Greater China — plans to double manufacturing capacity at its Guangzhou site in South China, and build a new plant (targeting textile fiber customers) at its Tangerang site in Indonesia.

• Its Pigments business unit — which has two production sites and is doubling (to 28 people) the size of its marketing and technical sales staff in Greater China — reasserted its announced intention to build a "world-scale plant" in Zhenjiang, China, to make Pigment Violet 23 (PV 23), a high-performance pigment used in wide variety of formulations and applications in coatings, plastics and printing inks. That same business unit also plans to build a new pigments preparation plant in Tangerang, Indonesia, and boost production capacity at its Roha, India, plant by about 50 percent.

•  Its Additives business unit — whose portfolio includes Addworks polymer additives as well as Exolit flame retardants and various processing aids — currently is evaluating options for a new plant (probably by early 2016) to make its Ceridust miconized waxes. The additives business unit currently operates one joint-venture plant in Greater China, in Kunming, Yunnan province, but Clariant is considering building a new plant for Addworks products in Zhenjiang.

In an interview session after the press conference, Heinter Mertens, head of the masterbatches business in Asia Pacific, also commented on Clariant's recently introduced liquid masterbatch service called HiFormer. He noted that liquid is “still a niche,” accounting for less than 5 percent of the overall market, but said he sees strong, double-digit growth for the liquid products for next few years. Some of that, Mertens noted, will be market growth and some will be product substitution.


Comments

Clariant says Asia holds the key to growth

By Robert Grace
Associate Publisher & Business Development Director

Published: April 23, 2014 3:52 pm ET
Updated: April 23, 2014 3:54 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Small is beautiful in Nissei's newest press

November 21, 2014 2:14 pm ET

Responding to customer demand for flexibility, Japanese plastics-equipment manufacturer Nissei Plastic Industrial Co. Ltd. is demoing a caster-...    More

Image

Dow reaches agreement with Third Point

November 21, 2014 9:11 am ET

Dow Chemical Co. has reached an agreement with the investment firm that has been trying to force the company to sell off some assets.More

Image

Ineos making its UK shale play

November 21, 2014 9:29 am ET

Chemical giant Ineos Group AG is planning to be the biggest player in the United Kingdom's shale gas industry.    More

Image

Total to buy majority stake in Polyblend

November 20, 2014 10:04 am ET

French oil and gas giant Total SA will buy a 68 percent stake in Germany's Polyblend GmbH, a subsidiary of Polymer-Chemie GmbH.    More

Image

Silica can replace plastic microbeads

November 19, 2014 6:00 am ET

As cosmetics and soap makers face pressure to remove plastic microbeads from their products, Evonik Industries touts its new silica-based microbeads a...    More

Market Reports

Plastics in Brazil - State of the Industry Report

This in-depth report examines the Brazilian plastics industry from a historical and geographical context. Our analysts provide insight on economic trends and forecasts, growing manufacturing sectors that utilize plastics, private investment opportunities, market environment challenges, and innovations in R&D.

Data tables and charts on producer prices, trade, plastics production and end market indicators is also included.

Learn more

Plastics Recycling Trends in North America

This report is a review and analysis of the North American Plastics Recycling Industry, including key trends and statistics based on 2013 performance. We examine market environment factors, regulatory issues, industry challenges, key drivers and emerging trends in post-consumer and post-industrial recycling.

Learn more

Injection Molders Market Report & Ranking 2014

This special package contains our 132-page 2014 Market Report on the Injection Molding segment and our exclusive 2014 RANKINGS database of 500+ Injection Molders for a discounted package price.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

June 2, 2015 - June 3, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - Chicago 2015

September 16, 2015 - September 18, 2015Plastics Caps & Closures - September 2015

October 27, 2015 - October 29, 2015Plastics Financial Summit - New York - 2015

More Events