Braskem adding UHMWPE capacity in Texas

By Frank Esposito
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: June 27, 2014 12:36 pm ET
Updated: June 27, 2014 12:41 pm ET

Image By: Braskem SA Braskem SA will add UMHWPE capacity at La Porte, Texas, where it already has 860 million pounds of polypropylene capacity.

Related to this story

Topics Materials, United States, Materials Suppliers

Brazilian plastics giant Braskem SA will spend $34 million to build a plant making ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) at its site in La Porte, Texas.

Construction on the plant will begin in the third quarter of 2014, with completion expected in the first half of 2016. São Paulo-based Braskem currently only makes UHMWPE in Brazil. The firm sells the material under the UTEC brand name.

“We believe our investment reinforces Braskem’s dedication to the plastics industry and to our strategic markets and clients,” Braskem America CEO Fernando Musa said in a June 27 news release.

He added that the new plant “is the next logical step for our UTEC business, as we have been providing UTEC to clients in the United States and Europe for over 10 years.”

UTEC-brand UHMWPE offers high abrasion resistance and impact strength, Braskem officials said. The material is eight times lighter than steel and lasts 10 times longer than high density PE, they added. Industries that use UTEC include construction, agriculture and automotive.

The new plant will create an unspecified number of new jobs and also will make use of the 100-member work force Braskem already has in La Porte, a company spokeswoman said. An annual production capacity number for the new plant was unavailable.

Braskem already operates about 860 million pounds of annual polypropylene resin capacity in La Porte. The firm ranks as North America’s largest PP maker, with a total of five plants in Texas, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.

The announcement adds to a busy growth schedule for Braskem. In October, the firm confirmed it was adding about 260 million pounds of annual linear low density PE production capacity in Brazil. That same month, Braskem announced the formation of an ABS joint venture with Styrolution GmbH and the building of a new plant making ABS and related resins in Brazil.

Braskem also is majority partner in the Ethylene XXI joint venture which is expected to open a major complex making PE and ethylene feedstock in Coatzacolacos, Mexico, in July 2015. Grupo Idea SA de CV of Mexico City is Braskem’s partner in the project.


Comments

Braskem adding UHMWPE capacity in Texas

By Frank Esposito
Senior Staff Reporter

Published: June 27, 2014 12:36 pm ET
Updated: June 27, 2014 12:41 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Ferro sells another piece of its plastics business

December 19, 2014 3:33 pm ET

Ferro Corp. has sold its North American polymer additives business to a private equity firm for $154 million in cash.    More

Image

Judge limits scope of jury verdict against JM Eagle

December 19, 2014 2:30 pm ET

A federal judge in Los Angeles said Dec. 18 that last year's jury verdict issued against J-M Manufacturing Co. — now JM Eagle — for...    More

Image

Jarden hiring for new plastics plant

December 19, 2014 1:45 pm ET

Consumer products conglomerate Jarden Corp. is hiring plastics technicians for a new operation in Erlanger, Ky.    More

Image

Antimicrobial polymers firm TiFiber launching pilot production in Ark.

December 19, 2014 10:58 am ET

TiFiber Inc., which makes synthetic compounds to control dangerous microorganisms, will locate a pilot production facility and its future company...    More

Image

Patel named LyondellBasell CEO

December 19, 2014 9:56 am ET

Bhavesh V. “Bob” Patel has been named CEO of Houston-based polyolefins producer LyondellBasell Industries NV, effective Jan. 12.    More

Market Reports

Flexible Packaging Trends in North America

Our latest RESEARCH report examines trends in FLEXIBLE PACKAGING impacting the North American market including a review of economic conditions, key drivers of growth, materials pricing, M&A activity, sustainability challenges and the outlook for 2015.

Learn more

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

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