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Chemical sponsors sought for Green photography exhibition

Chemical companies with green credentials are sought by the organisers of the International Garden Photographer of the Year, showing throughout the summer at London’s Kew Gardens. This is the second year I have seen the exhibition, which has some beautiful pictures and is displayed out in the open close to Kew’s famous Pagoda. The winning photographs have already been picked up by the publishing arm of the AA, and turned into a coffee-table book.

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Your YouTube viewing habits made public

A word of warning for Blog readers who have delighted in chemical industry spectacular videos like “INEOS Dormagen Fire”, “Global News Meeting Houston”, “EPCA Berlin 2007″, “APLA 2007 Buenos Aires” and many more. A US court has ruled that Google must divulge the viewing habits of every user who has ever watched any video on YouTube, according to a BBC article spotted by fellow blogger Jim Muttram in his Inflection Point blog.

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Ashok Kishore to head Trammochem trading

In a surprise move which rates very highly in the realms of Blog gossip and has set all the yahoo messenger screens buzzing, petrochemical trader Trammochem announced today that Ashok Kishore – well-known trader in aromatics – would “assume the responsibility of Trammochem’s worldwide trading activities”.

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Enhancing the corporate workspace – Ideas #1 and #2

Here is another sure-fire money-making idea from the fertile business brain that brought you The Solvent Calendar, and now “The Soundtrack to Paradise”. It’s going to be a strong seller along the lines of whale song recordings, which are supposed to be very popular with pregnant mums.

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Blog Holiday Special: Fund-raising for chemical charities

I’m thinking that this project would make a good fund-raising calendar for a chemically-themed charity. Maybe I will suggest it to my friend Terry at the Solvents Industry Association (SIA, now in conjunction with the CBA) for when they are next raising funds for the solvents abuse charity Re-Solv. It is a pairing of industry-and-charity which some might think teeters precariously on the edge of good taste.

I’m sure it wasn’t only on my table at one distant SIA dinner that some drunken jokester suggested that the industry should be encouraging more solvents abuse rather than less. Not such a laugh.

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Blog Holiday Special: Meetings in Paradise

Fine sand is trickling between my toes but my brain is tick-tick-ticking like a biological clock. It was only this morning on this island paradise that I witnessed a scene that made my blood run cold. Through an open door in the lobby, I caught a glimpse of a long table set with pads of paper for a meeting, and a flipchart ready for the day’s first presentation. Yes even here at the ends of the earth, the world of corporate meetings is hidden behind only the flimsiest of doors. Louis Macneice famously wrote in his “Snow” about cruel juxtapositions – the bowl of roses while outside the snow. He knew too well that you can run, but you can’t hide from the real world.

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Stripping off Italian-style at Enichem

As the summer temperatures rise, Italian energy company ENI SpA announced that this year they will be encouraging employees to dress down for summer, allowing them to reduce air conditioning in their offices by 1 degree and reduce their carbon footprint.

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Post-holiday chemical reading

While the Blog has been away on holiday (of which, more later), it seems that the mainstream press has been full of items of interest to chemical folk. UK supermarkets are now selling milk in recyclable plastic pouches, with a plastic jug, or “revolutionary eco-friendly milk container” to store in the fridge, according this article in the Times. ExxonMobil started a series of full page ads in the The Daily Telegraph (p7 on 9 June) on “The Global Energy Challenge”. Lucy Kellaway in the FT puts her finger on the button as to why people aren’t happy in their corporate jobs. They don’t get to spend enough time doing what they consider to be their real job. Beauticians, hairdressers and soldiers, by contrast, spend their working lives doing the work they have chosen to do, and have been trained to do, and are top of the happiness charts.

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Evonik’s happy locust

My colleague Nigel Davis is bemused by the new advertising campaign from Evonik. We’re not certain in the ICIS London office (he writes) – and neither is our correspondent in Frankfurt for that matter – whether the latest copy from Evonik’s advertising agency, created to announce the CVC stock purchase, is a joke. It shows a locust with a smile. The caption is “Freuschrecke, Hopperus investorus”. It’s a pun on the German word Heuschrecke (grasshopper), and freuen (happy). The message at the foot of the ad is: We are looking forward to a successful future with our new partner CVC”.

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New chemicals brokers: Blue Ocean Brokerage

The Blog has received a nice calling card in this morning’s emails from Kevin, Marcelo and Gerry in New York who are announcing the set-up of their new outfit, Blue Ocean Brokerage. The three ex-Starsupply brokers will be based in their offices on Fifth Avenue, New York.

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