Sika completes acquisition of Germany-based MBCC

Sika completes acquisition of Germany-based MBCC

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sika has completed the acquisition of MBCC Group after having received all necessary regulatory approvals, said the company.

With this highly complementary transaction, Sika strengthens its footprint across all regions, reinforces its range of products and services across the entire construction life cycle and drives the sustainable transformation of the construction industry further and faster.

MBCC Group, headquartered in Mannheim, Germany, and formerly owned by an affiliate of Lone Star Funds, is active in the field of construction systems and admixture systems. To close the transaction and to comply with regulatory requirements, Sika sold MBCC Group’s chemical admixtures assets in the UK, the USA, Canada, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand to the international private equity firm Cinven. The business now acquired by Sika generated sales of CHF 2.1 billion in 2022, employs 6,200 people and operates in over 60 countries and 95 production facilities.

After the successful closing, Sika’s sustainable product portfolio will be further enhanced with MBCC’s innovative technologies. Sika will offer a wide and comprehensive range of solutions to enable the sustainable transformation of the construction industry and help customers reduce their carbon footprint.

With this transaction, Sika strengthens its growth platform by broadening its product and solution offerings in four of five core technologies and seven of eight Sika Target Markets. Customers will benefit from an enhanced and more efficient distribution network across all construction markets. Sika expects to generate annual synergies in the range of CHF 160 – 180 million by 2026. The combined Group is set to reach sales in excess of CHF 12 billion in 2023.

We remind, the European Commission has approved the proposed acquisition of Germany-based construction chemicals producer MBCC by Switzerland’s Sika. The approval, under the EU Merger Regulation, is conditional on the divestiture of MBCC's global chemical admixture business.

Polynt Group to build resin plant in Canada

Polynt Group to build resin plant in Canada

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Polynt Group said it will open Polynt Coatings Canada Limited in Port Moody, British Columbia, during the second half of the year, said the company.

The new facility will meet the growing needs of the paint and coatings industry, it said, by increasing its capacity and flexibility in the resin marketplace. It will begin with production of conventional alkyds, oil-modified urethanes and water-based technologies to start, Polynt Group said.

We remind, Polynt Group started the process for the installation of a new esterification plant to produce special plasticizers, in particular trimellitates, at its site in Atlacomulco, Mexico. Special high-performance plasticizers, with their superior technical performances in electrical and high temperature applications, are a main component for the electrification of cars and transportation, a general trend so important for improving environmental sustainability. Trimellitates represents the most effective family of products that can satisfy those outstanding performance characteristics.

Polynt Group has more than 3,100 employees in 35 manufacturing operations throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia.

Eastman announces first-quarter 2023 financial results

Eastman announces first-quarter 2023 financial results

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Eastman Chemical Company announced its first-quarter 2023 financial results, said the company.

Chemical Intermediates sales revenue decreased 18% primarily due to 12% lower sales volume/mix and 5% lower selling prices.

Sales volume/mix was lower in plasticizers and olefins due to continued weak end-market demand, including for building and construction, consumer durables, and industrial.

Selling prices were lower due to lower raw material prices. EBIT decreased due to lower sales volume/mix and lower spreads, which were above mid-cycle levels in the year-ago period.

As per MRC, US-based Eastman aims to light a fire under the ecosystem for collecting hard-to-recycle polyester waste with USD2bn in new investments for plastics recycling projects in the US and France.

LyondellBasell and Veolia restructure their plastics recycling joint venture QCP

LyondellBasell and Veolia restructure their plastics recycling joint venture QCP

MOSCOW (MRC) -- LyondellBasell and Veolia Belgium have signed an agreement to restructure the ownership of Quality Circular Polymers (QCP) BV recycling facilities, with locations in Belgium and the Netherlands, said the company.

Veolia will sell its 50% share to LyondellBasell which will become 100% owner of QCP. With full ownership of QCP, LyondellBasell is progressing its strategy to build a profitable circular and low carbon solutions business, to meet customer demand for more sustainable products and solutions. LyondellBasell is well-positioned to continue working with its customers to supply the products and solutions needed, to meet their own goals.

"The demand for circular solutions continues to grow, and LyondellBasell is committed to creating solutions for everyday sustainable living," said Yvonne van der Laan, executive vice president, Circular & Low Carbon Solutions of LyondellBasell. "Full ownership of QCP supports our goal to produce and market at least 2 million metric tons of recycled and renewable-based polymers. We thank Veolia for their collaboration over the past five years and look forward to continuing to work with them as a feedstock supplier."

The QCP mechanical recycling facilities produce special blends, using household plastic waste. QCP's recycled materials are used to make items such as bottles, buckets, caps and closures as well as strollers and suitcases. LyondellBasell will continue to offer QCP polymers under its CirculenRecover brand, with QCP as its growth platform to enable circular solutions.

"Veolia's strategy is to grow its presence across the entire value chain in Europe and worldwide. The divestment of our participation in the QCP is in line with this strategy as it will allow us to internalize additional volumes in our plastics recycling plants in Europe. We will continue cooperation with LyondellBasell, notably by remaining a QCP feedstock supplier for several years," said Eric Troudoux, senior vice president Solid Waste Recycling & Recovery.

We remind, LyondellBasell announced it has made a decision to move forward with engineering to build an advanced recycling plant at its Wesseling, Germany. Using LyondellBasell's proprietary MoReTec technology, this commercial scale advanced recycling plant would convert pre-treated plastic waste into feedstock for new plastic production. The final investment decision is targeted for the end of 2023.

Germany weighs merits of growing China trade

Germany weighs merits of growing China trade

MOSCOW (MRC) -- As April winds down and major German chemical companies hold their annual shareholder meetings, questions are being asked whether about the country is tying its trade too closely to with China and repeating the same mistakes it made earlier by becoming dependent on Russian gas, said Chemanager.

The Bloomberg news agency reported on Apr. 27 that Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Economics Minister Robert Habeck were weighing plans to limit the export of chemicals for semiconductors from Germany — a major move that would have an enormous impact on chemical producers such as Merck and BASF.

Bloomberg’s sources said the proposal is part of a package of measures that would cut off China’s access to goods and services needed for the production of advanced semiconductors.

Fears are growing about what would happen to German companies supplying the lucrative Asian market if China invaded Taiwan, is the beating heart of the world’ semiconductor industry.

On the news, BASF shares — which already have lost 25% of their value this year, to the dismay of shareholders — lost a further 4% in early trading, but Merck initially emerged unscathed. Neither Germany’s political leaders nor the companies named confirmed the reports.

If Germany does move forward with the plans, it would join the US as well as other European countries such as the Netherlands, in pushing for a global blockade of China’s access to key technologies.

Strangling the country’s already limited supply line could thwart China’s ability to advance its own industry, commentators said, while noting that China is Germany’s is largest trading partner, and the European country’s trade deficit is increasing.

Germany has no advanced chip-making technologies, but the two chemical producers engaged in trade with China supply the global industry, with Merck claiming to be the only company ”deeply experienced” in every step of the semiconductor value chain,” and BASF a leading exporter of chemicals and solutions for semiconductor processes.

At the chemical giant’s 2023 annual general meeting in Mannheim, BASF’s shareholders gave CEO Martin Brudermuller a run for his money, peppering him with questions about what would happen if China turned inward and closed others out after years of luring western partners to its shores. Not unexpectedly, the answer was, the chances outweigh the risks.

In a telephone conference, BASF oil and gas subsidiary Wintershall’s CEO Mario Mehren had to explain why the risks sometimes have their way and his company is still in Russia — which accounts for 50% of its business — despite announcing plans to withdraw this past January.

The withdrawal is complicated, Mehren said, remarking that the Russian government had “virtually expropriated” its offshoot Wintershall Dea, a joint venture with Russian oligarchs.

We remind, BASF announced that it has received the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC) PLUS for certain grades of plastic additives produced at its manufacturing sites in Kaisten, Switzerland and McIntosh, Alabama, United States.