Dow strengthens hybrid materials position

13 September 2007 19:01  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Dow Chemical's planned acquisition of three epoxy formulators in Europe and the US will expand the company’s capability in hybrid epoxy/polyurethane systems, a company official said on Thursday.

“The hybrid epoxy/urethane system takes the best of two worlds,” said Pepe Carnevale, global business director of Dow Epoxy Systems, during a conference call with reporters.

He said epoxy materials offer superior adhesion, while urethane materials provide high elasticity. The hybrid of the two materials performs better than purely epoxy-based systems.

Dow produces the basic materials for both epoxy and polyurethane materials, Carnevale noted.

He said the two US-based formulators acquired by Dow, POLY-CARB and GNS Technologies, have collaborated for a long time on developing such hybrid epoxy/polyurethane materials and are “absolute masters” of the technology.

Dow officials indicated that the three acquisitions announced on Thursday are unlikely to be the last.

Carnevale said Dow Epoxy Systems will continue to explore and pursue new acquisitions, especially in high-growth areas in the Pacific, Middle East and Latin America.

“In India and China, for example, there is major infrastructure investment that we wish to tap into,” he said.

Dow Epoxy Systems will compete in the formulating industry with many of its own customers. Carnevale said that there were tradeoffs in the decision to grow Dow’s downstream footprint in the epoxy sector.

However, he added, “In the market we are targeting, epoxy represents 2-3% of the total market offering of competing chemistries such as acrylic resins, thermoplastics and other chemical solutions.”

Carnevale said, “We want to enlarge the slice of the pie served by epoxy.”
By: David Barry
+1 713 525 2653

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