Lotte Chemical Titan mulls USD4 billion upstream plant in Cilegon, Banten

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Publicly listed petrochemical company Lotte Chemical Titan, a subsidiary of the South Korean Lotte Group, is studying the possibility of building a USD4 billion upstream plant to reduce imports of raw materials, said Thejakartapost.

Lotte Chemical Titan president director Peter Yoon said the new plant would be built on 40 hectares near its existing plant in Cilegon, Banten.

Around 40 percent of the total investment needed for the new plant would be taken from the company’s internal cash, while the rest would be from bank loans, Yoon said, adding that all investors would be from South Korea.

“We are still negotiating with the land owner [regarding the land price], therefore we have yet to decide when construction will start. But once it starts, it will take about three years,” Yoon said during a press conference in Jakarta.

Lotte Chemical, which currently has a production capacity of 450,000 tons of polyethylene per year, expects the upstream plant to boost production capacity to 1 million tons by creating ethylene.

Lotte Chemical Titan is a petrochemical company in the middle-downstream stage. It manufactures and distributes polyethylene products under the Titanvene brand.

Meanwhile, ethylene is raw material for polyethylene, propylene, and polypropylene. Final products in the downstream stage include plastic bags, water cups, hoses and pipes.

The company’s plan to build an upstream plant is also part of its strategy to compete with other petrochemical companies in the country, including its biggest competitor, Chandra Asri Petrochemical, which produces ethylene.

As MRC reported earlier, Hyundai Oilbank and Lotte Chemical Corp. established Hyundai Chemical as a new venture in the "oil refining and synthetic fiber materials business". The venture, owned 60 % by Hyundai and 40% by Lotte, will invest up to 1.2-trillion won, with production targeted to begin in the second half of 2016 at Hyundai’s Daesan plant in South Chungcheong province.

The Lotte Group currently has a presence in Indonesia via its subsidiary, Honam Petrochemicals, which acquired Malaysia’s polyolefin major Titan Chemicals in July 2010. Included in the acquisition was Titan’s Indonesian subsidiary - PT Titan Petrokimia Nusantara (TPN), which has a polyethylene (PE) production capacity of 450,000 tonnes/year.

Teknor Apex developed new series of masterbatches for polylactic acid bioplastic

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Teknor Apex Company has announced the development of a new series of masterbatches for polylactic acid bioplastic that increase the heat distortion temperature (HDT) and impact strength of the resin and substantially reduce its cooling time in injection molding, reported Plastemart.

PLA increases the heat distortion temperature (HDT) and impact strength of the resin and reduces its cooling time in injection molding, making possible semi-durable and durable applications that until now have been closed to standard PLA.

The new Terraloy masterbatches, say the company, open the way to semi-durable and durable applications, which until now have been closed to standard PLA.

Terraloy 90017A and 90017B masterbatches are based on, and are for use with, NatureWorks’ Ingeo High Performance (HP) resin.

NatureWorks developed Ingeo HP resin to provide a higher HDT and greater impact strength than standard PLA, when used with a nucleating agent such as LAK-301 from Takemoto Oil & Fat. Teknor Apex has entered into a strategic alliance with Takemoto Oil & Fat in developing the new masterbatches based on NatureWorks Ingeo biopolymers.

While the nucleating agent can play a critical role in reducing cooling time by promoting the crystallization of PLA, it is difficult to disperse properly in the HP polymer, Teknor Apex says. By combining the nucleating agent with other ingredients, Teknor Apex says it not only improved dispersion but enhanced the overall property profile of the resin, while shortening cooling time from nearly 300 seconds to less than 40.

As MRC informed earlier, in 2013 Teknor Apex Company introduced a new rigid vinyl compound with a specially developed UV-blocking formulation, which provides clarity for photobioreactor and other outdoor tubing, along with high gloss and toughness for weatherable profile applications.

Teknor Apex is one of the world's leading custom compounders headquartered in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, USA. The company produces PA compounds in the UK, the U.S.A., and Singapore. Teknor Apex is one of the world's leaders of specialty PVC compounds which are used in a wide range of applications from wire and cable to automotive, medical, consumer and industrial products. The company also produces thermoplastic elastomers, nylon, bioplastics, chemicals, specialty compounds.

Eastman Board declares dividend

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The board of directors of Eastman Chemical Company has declared a quarterly cash dividend of USD0.40 per share on the company's common stock, as per the company's statement.

The dividend is payable July 1, 2015, to stockholders of record as of June 15, 2015.

As MRC wrote before, in December 2014, Eastman Chemical Company announced the completion of its acquisition of Taminco Corporation, a global specialty chemical company, for a total of USD2.8 billion in cash and assumed debt.

The acquired Taminco businesses are expected to be accretive to 2015 earnings per share by greater than USD0.35, excluding acquisition-related costs and charges, and to 2016 earnings per share by greater than USD0.60.

Eastman is a global specialty chemical company that produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With a portfolio of specialty businesses, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. Its market-driven approaches take advantage of world-class technology platforms and leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction and consumables. Eastman focuses on creating consistent, superior value for all stakeholders. As a globally diverse company, Eastman serves customers in approximately 100 countries and had 2014 revenues of approximately USD9.5 billion. The company is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA and employs approximately 15,000 people around the world.

Evonik added to MSCI Indexes

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Shares of the specialty chemicals company Evonik Industries AG will be added to the Morgan Stanley Capital International (MSCI) World and Germany Indexes effective June 1, 2015, reported the producer on its site.

MSCI announced the results of the May 2015 Annual Index Review yesterday night. The inclusion follows the recent placements of shares by a major shareholder of Evonik.

MSCI offers a family of consistent and comparable indexes which comprise the world’s largest companies and are broadly used by investors around the world to develop and benchmark their global equity portfolios.

Ute Wolf, CFO of Evonik, comments: "Evonik’s inclusion to the MSCI Indexes enhances our presence in the most important indexes globally. This means greater visibility for Evonik at the international financial markets and will further increase the high level of interest from global investors in our share. Even more motivated by the MSCI inclusion, we will continue our capital market oriented approach and further intensify our dialogue with international investors."

As MRC informed earlier, Evonik has strengthened its technology platform for specialty silicones with a global investment initiative, since demand for additives for the construction, textile, coating, furniture, and appliance industries is driving the global market growth for specialty silicones. Overall, Evonik plans to invest a triple-digit-million-euro amount in the coming years and gradually increase the production volume of specialty silicones.

Evonik, the creative industrial group from Germany, is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. Its activities focus on the key megatrends health, nutrition, resource efficiency and globalization. Evonik benefits specifically from its innovative prowess and integrated technology platforms. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In fiscal 2014 more than 33,000 employees generated sales of around EUR12.9 billion and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of about EUR1.9 billion.

KraussMaffei reports dramatic growth in China

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A year ago, KraussMaffei Group took a big step in China when it opened its expanded production space in Haiyan. Now, the company says, it’s benefitting from the investment, said Plasticsnews.

"The workforce is growing dramatically fast, the business is growing dramatically fast," said Christian Blatt, CEO of KM’s China unit, Shanghai KraussMaffei Machinery Co. Ltd. The company’s owner, Toronto-based private equity firm Onex Corp., does not disclose KM’s sales in China. But Blatt emphasized that China is a key and rapidly growing market for the Munich, Germany-based machinery manufacturer.

"You know the GDP growth in China last year was 7 percent. The growth we are targeting is far above that. The growth we have experienced in the past few years is far above that," Blatt said.

KM is winning business by building machines in China that meet the same specifications as its German-made equipment, but to local specifications, with faster delivery, and at a "very attractive price level," Blatt said. KM now has more than 300 employees in China. That includes workers at the Haiyan plant, and also sales and service personnel spread around the country, some of them in home-based offices.

KM sells KraussMaffei and Nestal injection molding machines, plus KraussMaffei Berstorff extruders and KraussMaffein reaction injection molding equipment. Blatt said all three segments are seeing growth in China in 2015. When the Haiyan plant opened last year, KM said it expected the plant to be fully utilized by 2017. Blatt said the company is on target to meet that goal.

Initially the company expected the plant would assemble equipment from components sourced elsewhere. Now, though, it is increasingly using local suppliers that are able to help the company provide complete systems to its customers.

As MRC informed earlier, two leading pipe manufacturers from Russia have chosen KraussMaffei Berstorff as a systems supplier for premium-quality technology and invested in PO pipe extrusion systems.

The KraussMaffei Group is among the world’s leading suppliers of machinery and systems for producing and processing plastics and rubber. Company's international customers come from a very wide range of industrial sectors, including the automotive, building, consumer goods, electrical, electronics, chemicals, medical and pharmaceutical industries and white goods.