Ineos shuts PP California plant for maintenance

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Ineos has undertaken a planned shutdown at its polypropylene (PP) plant in California, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in US informed that the company has started turnaround at the plant in mid-March, 2019. The plant is likely to remain off-line until end-April, 2019.

Located at Carson, California, the PP plant has a production capacity of 230,000 mt/year.

As MRC reported earlier, in January 2019, Ineos announced Antwerp as the location for its new petrochemical investment. The EUR3 billion investment will be the biggest ever made by Ineos and is first cracker to be built in Europe in 20 years. The investment is a game changer for the chemical sectors and will bring huge benefits to the Belgium and wider European economies.

Ineos Group Limited is a privately owned multinational chemicals company consisting of 15 standalone business units, headquartered in Rolle, Switzerland and with its registered office in Lyndhurst, United Kingdom. It is the fourth largest chemicals company in the world measured by revenues (after BASF, Dow Chemical and LyondellBasell) and the largest privately owned company in the United Kingdom.

Celenese appoints Lori Ryerkerk as CEO

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Celanese Corporation, a global chemical and specialty materials company, has announced that Mark Rohr, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), will assume the position of Executive Chairman of Celanese's Board of Directors, as per the company's press release.

After an extensive search, the Board has selected Lori Ryerkerk to succeed Rohr as CEO. The appointments are effective May 1, 2019, and at that time Ryerkerk will also join Celanese's Board.

In Rohr's Executive Chairman role, he will remain focused on guiding the strategic options to unlock value for Celanese shareholders and overseeing the achievement of the company's 2020 growth strategy, while working closely with Ryerkerk to ensure a seamless CEO transition.

Ryerkerk is an accomplished global executive, bringing to Celanese an impressive track record of creating value at large international corporations. Throughout her 35-year career, she has held a variety of senior leadership roles at petrochemicals and refining businesses in the United States, Europe and Asia. Ryerkerk most recently served as Executive Vice President of Global Manufacturing of Royal Dutch Shell where she was responsible for all chemical and refining assets globally and led an organization of 30,000 employees and contractors. Before joining Shell in 2010, Ryerkerk worked for ExxonMobil for 24 years where she held positions of increasing responsibility in management, strategy and operations, and at Hess Corporation. Ryerkerk earned a B.S. degree in chemical engineering from Iowa State University.

"Lori's extensive experience in leading global operations and managing some of the most complex technologies, engineering and supply chain systems in the world complement the opportunities before us to advance our rapid growth and continue our global expansion to satisfy our business objectives. Beyond this, Lori is a skilled international leader who is passionate about developing talent in a high-performing inclusive culture. Her leadership capabilities and diverse experience are a perfect fit to what we have built at Celanese. I welcome Lori to the team and look forward to working closely with her to execute on our growth strategy," said Rohr.

"I am very excited to join the Celanese team and get to know and work with all of its employees. I have long admired the company for its focus on execution and commercial innovation as well as its unwavering commitment to safety and environmental stewardship," said Ryerkerk. "Mark and the team have built a tremendous company culture and I will be building on the company's strong performance momentum and continuing to drive growth and shareholder value."

As MRC informed earlier, Celanese has raised list and off-list selling prices for Vinyl Acetate Monomer (VAM) sold in Europe, Turkey, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas. The price increases below is effective 1 April, 2018, or as contracts otherwise allow, and are incremental to any previously announced increases. Thus, VAM prices rose, as follows:

- by EUR100/mt - for Europe;
- by USD150/mt - for Turkey, Middle East and Africa;
- by USD0.05/lb - for USA and Canada;
- by USD150/mt - for Mexico and South America.

Celanese Corporation is a global technology leader in the production of differentiated chemistry solutions and specialty materials used in most major industries and consumer applications. Based in Dallas, Celanese employs approximately 7,700 employees worldwide and had 2018 net sales of USD7.2 billion.

Strike at Pernis oil refinery to go ahead as planned

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Royal Dutch Shell expects planned strikes at its 404,000 barrel per day Dutch Pernis oil refinery to go ahead as planned on Monday, reported Reuters with reference to a company's spokeswoman.

Shell currently has no estimate on the extent to which the strike might impact production, she added.

The strike, which comes after unions demanded higher wages, will also impact Shell’s Moerdijk chemical plant.

We remind that, as MRC wrote previously, in May 2018, China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and Shell Nanhai B.V. (Shell) announced the official start-up of the second ethylene cracker at their Nanhai petrochemicals complex in Huizhou, Guangdong Province, China.

Royal Dutch Shell plc is an Anglo-Dutch multinational oil and gas company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands and with its registered office in London, United Kingdom. It is the biggest company in the world in terms of revenue and one of the six oil and gas "supermajors". Shell is vertically integrated and is active in every area of the oil and gas industry, including exploration and production, refining, distribution and marketing, petrochemicals, power generation and trading.

Lanxess expands polyamide 6 Durethan P product series

MOSCOW (MRC) -- German speciality chemicals producer Lanxess is expanding its polyamide 6 Durethan P product series with the addition of two new materials, said Chemicals-technology.

The two new variants, namely Durethan BKV50PH2.0 and Durethan BKV60PH2.0EF, can be used as an alternative to the polyamide 66 materials and feature short glass fibre content levels of 50% and 60% by weight, respectively.

Lanxess noted that the alphabet ‘P’ in the Durethan P product series stands for performance, and the new grades have the ability to withstand more cyclical mechanical loads than standard products with the same glass fibre content.

“As a result, we also see both product innovations as cost-effective alternatives to polyamide 66 compounds."
The new variants can be used to support structures for electrical and electronics modules in batteries for electric vehicles (EV’s), engine oil pans, engine, chassis mounts and seat shells for passenger cars.

Durethan development expert Dr Thomas Linder said: “As a result, we also see both product innovations as cost-effective alternatives to polyamide 66 compounds, which have become significantly more expensive recently due to their limited availability."

In order to further assess the behaviour of its materials under a pulsating load, Lanxess has developed a HiAnt fatigue screening test, which is based on a conventional Wohler test.

Last October, Lanxess showcased Durethan BKV30PH2.0, BKV35PH2.0, BKV40PH2.0, and Durethan BKV130P, the first representatives of its new product range at Fakuma, the international trade fair for plastics processing.

Last September, Lanxess announced a multimillion-euro investment in its global production network for high-performance plastics with the construction of a compounding facility at its Krefeld-Uerdingen site in Germany.

Lanxess is a leading specialty chemicals company with about 19,200 employees in 25 countries. The company is currently represented at 74 production sites worldwide. The core business of Lanxess is the development, manufacturing and marketing of chemical intermediates, additives, specialty chemicals and plastics. Through Arlanxeo, the joint venture with Saudi Aramco, Lanxess is also a leading supplier of synthetic rubber.

Trinseo raised April PS prices in Europe

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Trinseo, a global materials company and manufacturer of plastics, latex binders and synthetic rubber, and its affiliate companies in Europe has announced a price increase for all polystyrene (PS), as per the company's press release.

Effective April 1, 2019, or as existing contract terms allow, the contract and spot prices for the products listed below will increase as follows:

- STYRON general purpose polystyrene grades (GPPS) - by EUR120 per metric ton;
- STYRON and STYRON A-Tech and STYRON X- Tech and STYRON C- Tech high impact polystyrene grades (HIPS) -by EUR120 per metric ton.

As MRC informed before, Trinseo last increased its prices for all PS grades on 1 February 2019. Thus, February prices for the said products grew, as stated below:

- STYRON GPPS grades - by EUR45 per metric ton;
- STYRON and STYRON A-Tech HIPS grades - by EUR45 per metric ton.

Trinseo is a global materials company and manufacturer of plastics, latex and rubber. Trinseo's technology is used by customers in industries such as home appliances, automotive, building & construction, carpet, consumer electronics, consumer goods, electrical & lighting, medical, packaging, paper & paperboard, rubber goods and tires. Formerly known as Styron, Trinseo completed its renaming process in 1Q 2015. Trinseo had approximately USD4.4 billion in net sales in 2017, with 16 manufacturing sites around the world, and approximately 2,200 employees.