LANXESS aims to make its entire value chain climate-neutral

LANXESS aims to make its entire value chain climate-neutral

MOSCOW (MRC) -- By 2050, specialty chemicals company LANXESS aims to make its entire value chain climate-neutral, said the company.

The Flavors & Fragrances business unit is leading the way: it will offer sustainable product variants for its entire portfolio of flavours and fragrances, preservatives and animal nutrition products by the end of 2023. The business unit’s most important products include the preservatives Kalaguard and Purox as well as flavours and fragrances under the Kalama and Purolan brands.

Holger Hueppeler, Head of the Flavors & Fragrances business unit, says: “With the transformation of our production, we are pioneers in offering sustainable products and are actively shaping the development towards more sustainability in the personal and home care industry. At the same time, we are helping our customers to achieve their own sustainability goals."

The portfolio shift meets a market where sustainably manufactured products are becoming increasingly important. In the past five years, the share of sustainably certified products in all new registrations in the personal care and home care sector has doubled, reaching 22 per cent in 2022.

We remind, Advent and LANXESS announced the envisaged establishment of an Advent controlled, leading global engineering materials joint venture company with sales of around EUR3 billion, combining the DSM Engineering Materials business with LANXESS’ High Performance Materials business.

Sherwin-Williams Q1 sales and profits rise

Sherwin-Williams Q1 sales and profits rise

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sherwin-Williams’ Q1 earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) rose 26.7% year on year to USD878m on the back of 8.9% sales growth, to USD5.44bn, said the company.

Net sales from stores in the US and Canada that were open over the past 12 months increased 14.2% in the quarter.

Gross profit rose 17.9% year on year. Gross profit as a percentage of net sales rose to 44.5%, from 41.1% in Q1 2022.

In response to analyst questions during the earnings call on 25 April, Sherwin-Williams management said that declining raw material costs had provided relief in Q1 '23. In particular, Sherwin-Williams mentioned declining costs for solvents and resins, as well as monomers. The company also expected further moderation in Q2.

In its full 2023 guidance, the company expects low-to-mid single digit percentage declines for raw material costs.

Titanium dioxide (TiO2) was one product that showed more resilience to downward pricing pressure. This opinion was also shared by multiple market participants who were surprised at how little TiO2 pricing has moved in late 2022 and thus far in 2023.

However, Sherwin-Williams management expected even TiO2 prices to decline in H2 '23.

We remind, AkzoNobel has reached an agreement with US-based Sherwin-Williams to acquire its Chinese decorative paints business for an undisclosed fee. The deal is expected to be completed in the second half of 2023 and includes the Huarun brand, it said in a statement.

Huntsman implements mass balance concept at Switzerland site

Huntsman implements mass balance concept at Switzerland site

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Huntsman Corporation announced its production site in Monthey, Switzerland has implemented a mass balance concept and achieved REDcert2 certification, said the company.

The certification covers the production of epoxy resins products used in a variety of consumer and industrial markets.

Mass balance refers to the mixing of fossil fuels and renewable or recycled raw materials into existing systems and production processes, while rigorously tracking their quantities and translating them into mass balance units, which are digitally attributed to specific products. A third party then certifies and confirms the recycled or renewable content of final products. Mass balance simultaneously empowers customers to reach their sustainability targets while reducing our own environmental footprint.

“We have chosen to implement the Mass Balance Concept to reduce the environmental impact of the products and solutions we provide to our customers,” said Philippe Christou, Head of Environmental & Technology Intelligence for Huntsman’s Advanced Materials division. “We assist our clients in achieving their goals through the option to intentionally select a product with a carbon footprint that is substantially lower than the average of the global market. This concept enables customers to save a significant proportion of CO2 emissions without compromising on performance, while avoiding costly re-qualifications."

The Monthey site is the first Huntsman production facility to receive REDcert2 certification.

We remind, Huntsman completed the USD593m sale of its Textile Effects division to Archroma, a company owned by the private-equity firm SK Capital Partners. Archroma was set up by SK Capital Partners in 2013 after acquiring the textile chemicals, paper specialties and emulsions businesses from Swiss producer Clariant in 2013. It has about 3,000 employees in 25 facilities globally.

Solvay to supply technology license for hydrogen peroxide mega-plant in China

Solvay to supply technology license for hydrogen peroxide mega-plant in China

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Solvay, a global market leader in specialty chemicals, has signed a license agreement with Guangxi Chlor-Alkali Chemical (GHCAC) which will enable the Chinese partner to build and operate a hydrogen peroxide megaplant at Qinzhou (Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region) designed to support its 300 kilotons propylene oxide (PO) production and other units on site, said the company.

Under this license, Solvay will provide its proprietary hydrogen peroxide mega-scale, high productivity process technology to GHCAC, including a dedicated process design package, operating expertise, and a range of services to ensure the optimized and reliable production of the new megaplant. In addition, the company will also supply GHCAC with proprietary 2-amylanthraquinone (AQ), the key chemical contributing to the high productivity and environmentally friendly chemical processes of Solvay’s megaplant technology.

It has been further agreed that Solvay will have a hydrogen peroxide offtake after the megaplant starts up. This will support the strategic growth of Solvay’s hydrogen peroxide business in China, in particular in the southern area.

“We are very pleased that GHCAC has chosen our advanced hydrogen peroxide technology for this important megaplant project in Qinzhou,” says Peter Browning, President of Solvay’s Peroxides global business unit.” This will allow the customer to meet market needs with a process design package backed by more than 50 years of experience, which provides an energy efficient and cost competitive solution with an excellent safety track record."

Weimin Zhang, General Manager of Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical, commented: “We are honored to work with Solvay in this ambitious venture, which will enable us to run the new hydrogen peroxide megaplant at lower energy consumption and less CO2 emissions than competitors. Next to the proven safety, reliability and cost effectiveness of Solvay’s high-productivity hydrogen peroxide technology, its sustainability benefits were instrumental to deploying it at our Qinzhou site."

The propylene oxide is a versatile chemical intermediate for a wide range of materials in many industrial and commercial market segments, including polyurethanes, propylene glycol ethers and propoxylated organic specialty compounds.

We remind, Solvay announces the completion of the sale of its 50% stake in the RusVinyl joint venture to its joint venture partner Sibur. At the time of closing, Solvay received €433 million in cash proceeds in Belgium which will be reported in the first quarter as cash flow from investing activities (Consolidated statement of cash flows). A capital loss of EUR174 million will be recognized in the first quarter of 2023, mainly reflecting the crystallization of historic currency translation balances.

Stepan’s Q1 profit decreased

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Stepan’s Q1 operating income fell nearly 67% year on year to USD21m as sales volumes in the surfactants and polymers segments fell amid softening demand, said the company.

Also hurting results were delays in the startup of new low 1,4 dioxane production assets and continued customer and channel destocking, the company said.

Surfactant operating income fell to USD27.1m, from USD53.8m in Q1 2022, primarily due to a 13% decline in global sales volume. Polymer operating income was USD10.0m, down from USD14.1m in Q1 2022, primarily due to an 18% decline in global sales volume, including a 19% volume decline in rigid polyols and lower demand in the specialty polyols and phthalic anhydride businesses.

“Looking forward, we believe second quarter volumes will remain depressed as markets continue to reconcile forward demand with inventory levels throughout the channel,” said CEO Scott Behrens.

“We expect second half year over year volume growth driven by modest recovery in demand for rigid polyols, growth in surfactant volumes associated with new contracted business, and a low comparable base," he said.

We remind, Stepan Company on 16 Feb 2023 reported that on 15 Feb 2023, the board of directors of Stepan Company declared a quarterly cash dividend on the Company's common stock of USD0.365/share. The dividend is payable on 15 Mar 2023, to common stockholders of record on 3 Mar 2023. The Company increased its quarterly cash dividend in 4Q 2022 by USD0.030/share, marking the 55th consecutive year that the Company has increased its cash dividend to stockholders.