BUDAPEST (ICIS)--Specialty chemical producer Arkema will become more asset light and market driven as chemicals demand patterns change and disruptive forces provide growth opportunities, CEO Thierry Le Henaff said on Monday.
Speaking at the 50th European Petrochemical Association (EPCA) meeting, Le Henaff suggested that a focus on soft skills both inside the company and with customers and others will help drive future growth.
“GDP is becoming less relevant as a guide to future development,” he added. “The external environment is unlikely to provide much support [for chemicals demand growth].”
Le Henaff pointed to the impact of changing demographics on chemicals markets and the opportunities driven by digitisation, disruptive innovations, and the move towards a circular economy.
These disruptive forces require a developing approach from producers, he suggested. “Soft skills will be a clear differentiator,” he said.
Le Henaff said that Arkema aims to foster talents inside the company and in partnerships and in relationships outside. Such activity would help the company develop new offerings. Arkema should leverage its diversity. The group’s corporate values are a fixed point in a very complex world, he said.
Arkema would become a “designer of solutions,” he said, and a more flexible and localised supply base will be essential to serve the consumer, he added.