US Celanese wants more acetic acid for in-house use - analyst

09 May 2012 18:28  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US-based Celanese wants to keep more of the acetic acid it produces for in-house use, according to a stock analyst’s report released on Wednesday.

The Texas-based acetyls producer’s new chief executive, Mark Rohr, told investors and analysts this week that he wants to increase Celanese’s internal usage of acetic acid to 75% from 50% now, according to a report by David Begleiter at Deutsche Bank.

Reducing the amount of acetic acid Celanese sells on the merchant market to only 25% of production will give the company more control over its destiny and increase profitability, the report said.

“As this occurs, earnings volatility should be reduced as Celanese will be less exposed to commodity fundamentals,” the report said.

Acetic acid, which is Celanese’s flagship product, is used as a chemical intermediate and solvent with widespread industrial applications.

Its largest use is as a feedstock for vinyl acetate monomer (VAM), which is used in paints, adhesives, textiles, paper, films and chewing gum. Celanese also is one of the world’s largest VAM producers.

Another use is in Celanese’s new TCX technology, which allows it to produce ethanol from natural gas or coal by using acetic acid as an intermediary, according to a recent patent.

Celanese said in March that the Chinese government had approved its request to modify a plant in Nanjing to produce industrial ethanol based on the TCX technology. The company plans to open the facility in mid-2013. 

By: Lane Kelley
+1 713 525 2653

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