Lanxess expands high-performance rubber capacities as demand grows

Lanxess expands high-performance rubber capacities as demand grows

3:15 AM, 21st November 2011
Lanxess expands high-performance rubber capacities as demand grows
Axel C Heitmann, Chairman of the Board of Management, Lanxess.


LEVERKUSEN, GERMANY: Lanxess is a premium supplier of Nd-PBR and SSBR rubbers to leading tire manufacturers in Japan and South Korea. The company is the leader in high-performance synthetic rubbers for ‘Green Tires,’ the fastest growing sector in the tire industry, with an annual growth rate of about 10 per cent. According to the latest forecasts, around 2 billion tires will leave production lines worldwide by 2015 compared to around 1.6 billion at present. This is an increase of some 25 per cent for the overall tire industry in this period.

In addition, demand will be accelerated by tire legislation being introduced around the world. Japan and South Korea were the first countries in the world to introduce a label system that grades tires above all for their fuel efficiency and wet grip characteristics. South Korea plans to introduce a mandatory label as of November 2012, the same time the European Union will introduce labeling. Other countries such as Brazil, the USA and China are expected to follow in coming years.

“In order to meet growing customer demand, we have made the right strategic investment decisions to strengthen our global rubber capacities,” said Axel C Heitmann, Chairman of the Board of Management, Lanxess.

Lanxess has significantly increased its production capacities for neodymium polybutadiene rubber (Nd-PBR) at its sites in Dormagen, Germany, Cabo, Brazil and Orange, Texas, USA. The company is also planning a new plant for Nd-PBR in Singapore. The new facility is scheduled to go on stream in 2015 at a cost of around €200 million.

At the same time, Lanxess has already initiated a feasibility study at its Triunfo site in Brazil to implement new technology to switch production of emulsion styrene-butadiene rubber (ESBR) to solution styrene butadiene rubber (SSBR). A final decision will be made mid-2012. Alongside EPDM, Lanxess is one of the leading producers of premium halobutyl rubbers for the tire industry. With growing demand, Lanxess is making the single largest investment of its history in the form of a €400 million butyl plant in Singapore, planned to start production in early 2013.

© WOC News




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