Corrected: Styrolution to cut SM, PS offtake in Germany, expands copolymers

19 March 2012 13:14  [Source: ICIS news]

Styrolution chief executive Roberto Gualdoni

Correction: In the ICIS news story headlined “Styrolution to cut SM, PS offtake in Germany, expands copolymers” dated 19 March 2012, please read in the fourth paragraph … Styrolution was created in October 2011 … instead of …Styrolution was created in October 2010 …. A corrected story follows.

LONDON (ICIS)--Styrolution will no longer take styrene monomer (SM) and polystyrene (PS) from its joint-venture plants in Marl, Germany, while it increases styrene copolymer capacities in Germany, India and South Korea, the company said on Monday.

The Frankfurt-headquartered styrenics major will stop taking product from the INEOS-operated 350,000 tonne/year SM plant at Marl and a 180,000 tonne/year PS unit at the same location by the end of 2012, it said.

PS customers served by the Marl plants will not be affected, it added, because it can provide equivalent products from production sites in Belgium, France and Sweden.

Styrolution was created in October 2011 by the merger of certain of the styrenics operations of Germany’s BASF and Switzerland-headquartered INEOS.

“By terminating our off take from the Marl plants, we expect to improve the competitive position of our European styrene-based commodity business by maximising capacity utilisation at our other sites,” said Martin Pugh, president EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa) for the company.

The closures will affect 110 employees, Styrolution CEO, Roberto Gualdoni told ICIS in an interview.

Styrolution’s current global SM capacity is 3.3m tonne/year and its global PS capacity 2.3m tonnes/year, he added.

Styrolution said it wanted to drive “selective, value-oriented growth in emerging markets and specialities”, by adding capacities for more specialised polymers in Germany, India and South Korea.

Production facilities in Ludwigshafen, Germany for the styrene copolymers sold under the Luran S, Terluran HH/HD and Terlux trademarks will be expanded by more than 20% Gualdoni said. The expansions are due to be completed by the first quarter of 2013.

A new 40.000 tonne/year Luran S acrylonitrile styrene acrylate (ASA) production line will be built at Ulsan, South Korea with operation expected to start at the beginning of July 2012.

Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) production capacity at Vadodara in India will be increased to 110,000 tonnes/year by 2014. The expansion will be made through debottlenecking and involve the installation of an additional styrene acrylonitirile (SAN) resin line and by expanding compounding capacity.

The ASA capacity in South Korea is being added to serve an emerging China market, and to give the company the ability to supply the same grades to customers in Asia, Europe and the Americas, Gualdoni said. The company currently has ASA capacities in Germany and Mexico.

Styrolution says it is the market leader for styrenics in India.

By: Nigel Davis
+44 20 8652 3214

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