PolyOne expands pre-certified biocompatible healthcare portfolio

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PolyOne Corporation, a premier global provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions, has announced the addition of new capabilities to its OnColor HC Plus portfolio, according to the company's press release.

These expanded offerings add medical-grade LDPE, nylon, PEBA, PS and PVC to the globally available palette of specialty healthcare colorants, and are pre-certified to meet or exceed biocompatibility requirements for ISO 10993 and/or USP Class VI protocols.

James Petrie, marketing director for PolyOne Color and Additives, explained, "This expansion of the OnColor HC Plus portfolio reinforces our commitment to the healthcare industry and adds new alternatives for customers who seek to streamline their qualification, testing and supply chain management processes."

All OnColor HC Plus colorants include formulation lock-down provisions, and are suitable for specialized pharmaceutical goods and medical devices.

As MRC reported earlier, PolyOne Corporation has also recently announced the launch of ECCOH XLS low smoke and fume, non-halogen formulation for flame retardant wire and cable applications. The new offering was developed for applications including low-voltage power cables for building and construction use and specialty wire and cable for marine environments.

PolyOne Corporation is a global provider of specialized polymer materials, services, and solutions. PolyOne is a provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions with operations in specialty polymer formulations, color and additive systems, polymer distribution and specialty vinyl resins.

Chemical maker Huntsman sees higher earnings at all businesses

MOSCOW (MRC) -- U.S. chemical maker Huntsman Corp's forecast higher earnings across all its business units this year, after posting a better-than-expected quarterly profit as cost cuts boost margins, said the producer in its press release.

Huntsman's shares rose as much as 5.7% to USD23.41. A 7% drop in operating costs and higher sales at four of Huntsman's five businesses helped the company post a fourth-quarter profit, compared with a loss a year-ago.

The 4% rise in revenue at its biggest business, polyurethane, was the steepest rise across all its businesses. The business makes materials used in foam insulation and accounted for more than 45% of revenue in the quarter.

Revenue in the pigments business rose 3%, the first rise in seven quarters, driven mainly by a increased demand from Europe, the company's largest market for the product.

Huntsman bought Rockwood Holdings Inc's pigments business for USD1.1 billion, betting on a turnaround in the market demand for titanium dioxide, a pigment used to whiten everything from toothpaste to cars.

A recovery in automobile and housing industries in North America is boosting demand for the pigment and Huntsman said it expected prices to be modestly higher in the current quarter and the third quarter.

"Improvement in volumes and declining inventory levels point to stabilizing pigment market conditions," UBS analyst John Roberts said in a note.

As MRC informed earlier, last year, Huntsman Corp. signed a definitive agreement to acquire Oxid LP, a privately-held manufacturer and marketer of specialty urethane polyols based in Houston, Texas. Oxid's polyols are a key component in the production of energy-saving polyurethane insulation products that are used in residential and commercial construction.

Huntsman is a global manufacturer and marketer of differentiated chemicals. Our operating companies manufacture products for a variety of global industries, including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, textiles, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging.

Solvay opens innovation centre in Singapore

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Solvay announces the opening of a new Research & Innovation center in Singapore, which will be the Group’s core innovation ground for its Consumer Chemicals growth engine in the Asia-Pacific region,said the producer in its press-release.

Located in Singapore’s Biopolis research hub, the 1,100 square-meter laboratory will lead worldwide innovation projects primarily for Solvay’s business unit Novecare, which is active in the fields of Home and Personal Care, Coatings and Oil & Gas. It will also be a regional hub in developing sustainable solutions for the Agrochemical business and provide technical support to Solvay’s regional customers as well as plants in the region.

Solvay, which received strong support from the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), invested close to EUR2 million in the laboratory and expects to invest another EUR5 million in the next five years to boost the laboratory’s capabilities, including the hiring of an extra 30 researchers. The laboratory is Solvay’s latest investment in Singapore after Novecare, a global leader in the specialty surfactants industry, announced in April 2013 the construction of a large scale alkoxylation facility.

As MRC reported earlier, in 2012, Solvay Specialty Polymers and Rhodia Engineering Plastics launched a new EUR 21 million compounding plant in Changshu, Jiangsu province. It will serve the Chinese markets for electrical and electronics, wire and cable, automotive, consumer, and industrial applications.

In addition, Solvay is building a new EUR 120 million production plant for fluorinated polymers at its industrial site in Changshu, to meet growing demand in Asia in end-use markets such as automotive, photovoltaic, Li ion batteries, membranes for water purification, and oil and gas applications. The new plant is scheduled to be operational early 2014.

Solvay Specialty Polymers manufactures over 1500 products across 35 brands of high-performance polymers - fluoropolymers, fluoroelastomers, fluorinated fluids, semi-aromatic polyamides, sulfone polymers, aromatic ultra polymers, high-barrier polymers and cross-linked high-performance compounds - for use in aerospace, alternative energy, automotive, healthcare, membranes, oil and gas, packaging, plumbing, semiconductors, wire and cable, and other industries.

Borealis and Statoil to renew their long term ethane sourcing contract

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Borealis announced a new long term agreement to source ethane from Statoil for its flexible steam cracker in Stenungsund. This contract will continue to provide Borealis with an attractive source of feedstock for its petrochemical complex in Stenungsund, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Borealis and Statoil have renewed the contract for the supply of ethane from Statoil’s gas plant at Karsto which will secure a significant volume of ethane to Borealis’ cracker in Stenungsund for the coming years. The ethane supply has been agreed at competitive terms for both parties, taking into account the global change of the ethane market due to the availability of United States shale gas. The new contract will start in October 2015 and last for a period of 7 years.

The renewal of the ethane supply contract with Statoil shows the value of our long term partnership, explains Mark Garrett, Borealis CEO. "This new contract will secure that our Stenungsund petrochemical complex will stay ahead of the curve in an increasingly competitive environment for the European industry."

Borealis’ cracker in Stenungsund is one of the most feedstock flexible crackers in Europe. Apart from ethane it can also crack naphtha, propane and butane. Stenungsund has significant LPG storage capacity, allowing the company to source LPG from various sources with vessel sizes up to very large gas carriers.

As MRC wrote before, Borealis and Borouge, the world's leading providers of innovative, value-creating solutions for the wire and cable industry, has announced the dedicated roll-out of the technology platform Borlink in Russia. Borlink was introduced by Borealis and Borouge as a technology platform offering a complete global package of power cable compounds and expertise serving applications for medium and high voltage (MV, HV), including extra high voltage (EHV) and high voltage direct current (HVDC).

Borealis is a leading provider of innovative solutions in the fields of polyolefins, base chemicals and fertilizers. With headquarters in Vienna, Austria, Borealis currently employs around 6,200 and operates in over 120 countries. It generated EUR 7.5 billion in sales revenue in 2012. The International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) of Abu Dhabi owns 64% of the company, with the remaining 36% owned by OMV, the leading energy group in the European growth belt. Borealis provides services and products to customers around the world in collaboration with Borouge, a joint venture with the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC).

Spanish conglomerate set to buy two La Seda de Barcelona PET plants

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A Spanish conglomerate with interests in designer jewelry, cosmetics and paperboard packaging is set to acquire two plants from the bankrupt PET packaging group La Seda de Barcelona, local press reports say, said Plasticsnews.

They indicate that Cristian Lay group of Jerez de los Caballeros, Spain, has offered around 15 million euros to buy LSB's 170,000 metric ton per year PET polymer plant in El Prat de Llobregat, near Barcelona, along with its 200,000 metric ton per year feedstock plant in Tarragona.

The sale is subject to approval of the Spanish commercial court overseeing the LSB group's liquidation. The court in Barcelona authorized the formal process of selling off the Catalan PET group's polymer, chemicals, packaging and recycling operations at the end of January. It was in June last year that LSB filed for voluntary insolvency when it failed to reach agreement on debt restructuring with its creditors.

La Seda de Barcelona SA is a Spain-based company primarily engaged in the production and marketing of fiber fabrics and plastics. The Company’s activities are structured in two business divisions: Raw Materials, which comprises chemical applications intended for the production of Glicol, and PET & Packaging, which comprises the subdivisions of Artenius PET, focused on the production of polyethylene terephthlate (PET) and Artenius PET- Packaging Europe (APPE), active in integral packaging solutions. La Seda de Barcelona SA is a parent company of Grupo Seda. In January 2013, the Company sold its total stake in Slir SL. In June 2013, the Company entered insolvency proceedings. On October 28, 2013, the Company announced that the Commercial Court No. 1 of Barcelona has notified the Company on its authorization to sell LSB’s stake in Artenius Turkpet AS.