BASF further expands its position for engineering plastics in Europe
BASF has signed an agreement with SABIC Innovative Plastics on the acquisition of SABIC Innovative Plastics’ shares in the PBT joint venture, BASF GE Schwarzheide GmbH & Co. KG. PBT
(polybutylene terephthalate) is an engineering plastic. The shares will be transferred on December 31, 2007, provided the transfer has been approved by the relevant authorities. The transfer of
the shares will not have any effects for the employees since those working in the joint venture are already personnel of BASF Schwarzheide GmbH, the joint venture’s general partner, today. Both
companies have agreed to keep the financial details confidential. BASF GE Schwarzheide GmbH & Co. KG had been a joint venture between BASF Aktiengesellschaft and GE Plastics (GEP). With the
recent takeover of GE Plastics by the Saudi Arabian petrochemical company SABIC (Saudi Basic Industries Corporation), GE Plastics’ shares in the joint venture were transferred to SABIC.
“With the purchase of SABIC’s shares in the production joint venture, we are able to satisfy our customers’ rising PBT demand and we are thus making a long-term investment in this field of
activity,” explains Willy Hoven-Nievelstein, head of BASF’s business unit Engineering Plastics Europe. “Through this acquisition, we are also consolidating our high ranking in the market for
engineering plastics,” says Hoven-Nievelstein. BASF is projecting unabated strong growth of the European market for engineering plastics in the coming years. The production capacity of the
joint venture is 100,000 metric tons per year.
The purchase of SABIC Innovative Plastics’ shares in BASF GE Schwarzheide marks BASF’s fifth acquisition in the sector of engineering plastics within the last five years. In 2003, Honeywell’s
worldwide engineering plastics business and Ticona’s polyamide 66 business were bought and have been successfully integrated. This was followed in 2005 by the takeover of Leuna-Miramid GmbH and
the engineering plastics business of LATI USA Inc. Moreover, BASF has started up operations in the growth market of Asia within the last 18 months, including a new production joint venture for
PBT together with Toray in Malaysia and a new compounding plant in Pudong near Shanghai, China.
BASF is marketing PBT under the trade name Ultradur©. The engineering plastic is mainly used in automotive construction as well as in the electrical & electronics industry.
Particularly innovative examples of applications for PBT are housings for transmission control units with integrated circuit-board conductors, headlight reflectors and laser-structured
electronic components. Other engineering plastics made by BASF are Ultramid©, Miramid© and Capron© (PA: polyamide), Ultraform© (POM: polyoxymethylene) and Ultrason©
(PSU, PESU, PPSU: polysulfone, polyether sulfone, poly phenyl sulfone).