Sika acquired Sable Marco

Sika acquired Sable Marco

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sika has acquired Canada’s Sable Marco Inc, which manufactures cementitious products and mortars, for an undisclosed amount, said the company.

Sable Marco is headquartered in Pont Rouge, near Quebec City, and generates annual sales of Swiss francs (Swfr) 20m (USD22m). The acquisition “should open up new opportunities for Sika in the eastern region of Canada and clearly improve Sika’s access to the retail distribution channel,” the company said.

Sable Marco’s product range includes cementitious products, mortars, polymeric sand, and other bagged materials. It operates one plant in the area of Quebec City “offering logistic and strategic benefits for Sika Canada,” Sika said.

As MRC informed earlier, Sika commissioned a manufacturing facility in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE), which produces epoxy resins aimed at flooring solutions. Sika has decided to invest in the expansion of its manufacturing facilities at the Dubai site in order to increase flexibility in production, shorten delivery times, optimize cost structures, and reduce inventories.

Sika is a specialty chemicals company with a leading position in the development and production of systems and products for bonding, sealing, damping, reinforcing, and protecting in the building sector and motor vehicle industry. Sika has subsidiaries in 101 countries around the world and manufactures in over 200 factories. Its more than 20,000 employees generated annual sales of CHF 7.09 billion in 2018.

EIA inctorduces new forecasts of renewable diesel and other biofuels

EIA inctorduces new forecasts of renewable diesel and other biofuels

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In the EIA’s February Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO), they introduced new forecasts of US production, consumption, and the net of imports less exports of biodiesel, renewable diesel, and other biofuels in the US, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

This new breakout provides a more detailed forecast for U.S. renewable diesel production. In previous STEO releases, the EIA forecast biomass-based diesel consumption, which combined all production and imports of biodiesel consumed in the US. with imported volumes of renewable diesel, not including domestically produced renewable diesel. Differentiating biodiesel from renewable diesel, provides a more precise accounting of biomass-based diesel.

Like biodiesel, renewable diesel is used to comply with the renewable volume obligations for biomass-based diesel in the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) administered by the US. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The two fuels also supply 95% or more of the RFS requirement for non-cellulosic advanced biofuels. The EPA’s proposed rule for 2022 calls for higher production in both of these categories. In addition, state-level programs, including California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard and Oregon’s Clean Fuels Program, have encouraged several petroleum refineries to convert to renewable diesel. As a result of these conversions and new construction of renewable diesel refineries, the EIA expects US production capacity of renewable diesel to nearly triple by the end of 2023 from the current production capacity of 77,000 bpd.

Based on renewable diesel plant construction and the EPA’s proposed rule for the 2022 RFS, the EIA forecasts that renewable diesel production will increase significantly in 2022 and 2023.

The EIA also assumes a significant ramp-up in the US production capacity of renewable diesel will add upward pressure to already high feedstock oil prices, which limits actual production growth in their forecast.

As MRC informed earlier, EIA forecasts that crude oil prices will fall in 2022 and 2023 from 2021 levels, according to its January 2022 Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO). In the fourth quarter of 2021, the price of Brent crude oil, the international pricing benchmark, averaged USD79 per barrel (b). EIA forecasts that the price of Brent will average USD75/b in 2022 and USD68/b in 2023.

We remind that oil supply will soon overtake demand as some producers are set to pump at or above all-time highs, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said last Wednesday, while demand holds up despite the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.

Plastic Energy and Axens to partner with Qenos for circular plastics manufacturing

Plastic Energy and Axens to partner with Qenos for circular plastics manufacturing

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Plastic Energy and Axens are partnering with Qenos in the planning of a major circular plastics manufacturing facility in Australia, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Plastic Energy and Axens will support the recently announced Qenos and Cleanaway joint feasibility study for the conversion of up to 100,000 t of household soft plastic waste and mixed plastics back into circular polyethylene.

Circular plastics manufacturing using advanced recycling takes soft plastics and other hard-to-recycle plastic waste, which currently goes to landfill, incineration or escapes into the environment and recycles this back into the same products. It is the next major phase in recycling, and is forecast to attract USD680 B of investment globally by 2050.

Circular polyethylene has identical properties to virgin polyethylene and can be used in food contact and high-performance applications thereby supporting local packaging and food manufacturers to achieve the 2025 APCO national packaging targets.

The QCPP is the largest proposed circular plastics project in Australia, and is currently being considered for support under the Federal Government’s modern manufacturing initiative.

The joint feasibility study is expected to be completed by July 2022 and a FID to be made later this year. Pending a successful outcome, the first of the advanced recycling facilities is expected to be operational by 2025. Fully commissioned, the QCPP would secure a leadership role for the Australian manufacturing chain in this emerging global sector.

As per MRC, Axens and Univation Technologies have entered into a cooperation agreement to develop improved capital and operating efficiencies for the production of on-purpose linear alpha olefins (LAO)—including both butene-1 and hexene-1—for use in manufacturing polyethylene resins with the UNIPOL PE process. The alliance is expected to identify and deliver quantifiable synergies to benefit polyethylene producers globally for new UNIPOL PE projects as well as provide for retrofit opportunities for UNIPOL PE plants already in operation.

As per MRC, Axens launched new P/PR 200 Series of its catalyst technology. This year, Axens celebrated the tenth anniversary of Symphony, Axens’ suite of high performance reforming catalysts, which gave Axens a unique position in reforming technology. Symphony consists in industrially proven, high-performance, top-stability reforming catalysts together with an outstanding hydrothermal resistance, covering continuous catalyst regeneration (CCR), semi-regenerative and cyclic applications.


Neste and Marathon Petroleum to establish JV for production of renewable fuels

Neste and Marathon Petroleum to establish JV for production of renewable fuels

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Neste Corporation has signed definitive agreements for the establishment of a 50/50 JV with US-based Marathon Petroleum, reported Reuters.

The JV will produce renewable diesel following a conversion project of Marathon's refinery in Martinez, California (the Martinez Renewable Fuels project). The closing of the JV is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, including obtaining the necessary permits, which depend upon certification of a final Environmental Impact Report.

Neste’s total investment will amount to approximately EUR900 MM (USD1 B), inclusive of half of the total project development costs projected through the completion of the project. The project is expected to increase Neste’s renewable products capacity by slightly over 1 MMtpy. Production of renewable diesel is expected to come online in the second half of 2022. The facility is planned to reach its full annual nameplate capacity of 2.1 MMt by the end of 2023.

“This is a very important step in our renewables growth strategy execution. The location of the facility is in the middle of the growing renewable fuel market in California. The partnership will further strengthen our footprint in the US, as we will have a broad value chain that covers feedstock sourcing to renewables production and sales in the US. We are thrilled to partner with Marathon: we both share an ambition in offering more high-quality, lower-emission renewable products, thus helping customers to achieve their sustainability goals,” said Peter Vanacker, Neste’s President and CEO.

Through this JV Neste obtains a 50% interest in the Martinez Renewable Fuels project. The production output will be split evenly between the JV partners, and each partner will be responsible to market the products under its own brand and responsibility. The facility will be operated by Marathon, which has long experience in refinery operations and in executing major capex projects in the US. Both Neste and Marathon will be responsible for feedstock sourcing for the JV.

As MRC wrote before, Neste has successfully concluded its first series of trial runs processing liquefied waste plastic at its Porvoo refinery in Finland. After kicking the series off with its first-ever industrial scale trial run with liquefied waste plastic in 2020, Neste has conducted additional runs in 2021. In the course of the trial runs, Neste has been able to upgrade liquefied waste plastic to drop-in solutions for plastic production and develop industrial scale capabilities to upgrade recycled feedstocks. Trials pave the way for continuous and commercial activities. Neste has set itself the goal of processing more than 1 MM tons of plastic waste per year from 2030 onwards.

Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,265,290 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2021, up by 14% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,363,850 tonnes in January-November, 2021, up by 25% year on year. Supply of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.

Neste (Helsinki) creates solutions for combating climate change and accelerating a shift to a circular economy. The company refines waste, residues and innovative raw materials into renewable fuels and sustainable feedstock for plastics and other materials. The company is the world’s leading producer of renewable diesel and sustainable aviation fuel, developing chemical recycling to combat the plastic waste challenge. In 2020, Neste's revenue stood at EUR11.8 billion, with 94% of the company’s comparable operating profit coming from renewable products.


Engel acquires automation specialist TMA

Engel acquires automation specialist TMA

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In a move aimed to expand its offerings in process automation, injection molding machine maker Engel has acquired the majority interest in Poland-based TMA Automation, said Canplastics.

The financial terms of the deal have not been disclosed. "Engel has a strong presence in Eastern Europe, and with the acquisition of TMA is taking the next step for further growth in the region,” Engel Group CEO Stefan Engleder said in a news release. TMA’s technologies perfectly complement our in-house spectrum of robots and automation components."

The release also noted that Engel and TMA have already cooperated closely numerous customer projects, with the regional focus being Poland and the neighbouring eastern European countries. One of TMA’s focuses is on automating in-mold labelling processes in the medium performance segment. “With TMA, we’ve gained a know-how provider who knows the specific requirements of this performance segment very well and optimally serves them with solutions tailored to them,” Engleder said.

In the high-performance segment, Engel said it will continue to cooperate with its long-standing partners for IML automation. TMA, which is headquartered in Gdynia, Poland, will remain independent under the Engel Group umbrella and continue to be an independent market player in the future. The two company founders, Marek Langowski and Piotr Orlikowski will continue to manage the company.

Engel also said that the deal helps to allow TMA to push forward with its growth targets. A site has already been purchased in Gdansk in order to start building a new office and production facility in the near future. “As a location, Gdansk, with its good infrastructure and large number of technical universities in the surrounding area, is the ideal starting position for excellent access to a qualified expert workforce,” said managing director Walter Aumayr. “We will also be expanding the workforce at the new Gdansk facility."

We remind, Engel Holding GmbH has acquired Austria-based MES provider T.I.G. (Technische Informationssysteme GmbH). The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.

Also, Schwertberg, Austria-based injection molding machine manufacturer Engel Holding GmbH has entered the pre-owned machinery market through its new Engel Used Machinery s.r.o. business. The newly founded company is headquartered in Prague, Czech Republic.