InterviewSolutia may back integrate into ethylene vinyl acetate

13 September 2010 17:45  [Source: ICIS news]

Solutia CEO Jeffry QuinnBy Joseph Chang

NEW YORK (ICIS)--US-based specialty chemicals producer Solutia is considering back-integrating into ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) production, CEO Jeffry Quinn said on Monday.

“We currently buy EVA resin from multiple sources and extrude the sheet for photovoltaic applications, but we are evaluating long-term options on that. Certainly backward integration is among the options,” Quinn said in an interview with ICIS.

“We are the industry leader in producing PVB [polyvinyl butyral] resins, and some of the same skill sets, technology and knowledge base would apply well to the EVA side,” he added.

In addition, there were a number of opportunities to acquire EVA production capabilities, Quinn said.

Solutia’s acquisition of Germany-based Etimex Solar for €240m ($304m) in June added EVA-based solar encapsulants to Solutia’s product portfolio, it said. Solutia already produced PVB-based encapsulants.

EVA accounts for 80-90% of the solar encapsulants market, with PVB making up the rest, noted Chris Reed, Solutia’s business management director of advanced interlayer photovoltaics.

The solar end market accounted for about 7% of Solutia’s sales in the 12 months prior to the end of June, including the pro forma impact from the acquisition of Etimex Solar.

Additional reporting by Brian Ford in Houston and Helen Lee in Singapore

($1 = €0.79)

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By: Joseph Chang
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