LANXESS to expand its Wuxi site for high-tech plastics

The specialty chemical company LANXESS broke ground today on a new materials distribution center in Wuxi, China.

Covering an area of 30,000 square meters in the Wuxi New District, the facility integrates testing center, production site, and the hub for customer service and technical support covering the Asian market as a whole.

“LANXESS started investing in Wuxi as early as in 1998. We have benefited from the strong support of local government and sound infrastructure and investment environment here,” said Martin Kraemer, CEO of LANXESS Greater China. “With this new investment, we rigorously continue our growth strategy.”

The automotive industry is the largest customer for LANXESS Semi-Crystalline products, which produces Durethan and Pocan. These highly innovative products allow for the design of lighter-weight plastic parts to replace metal parts in automobiles, contributing to fuel efficiency and reduced emissions. In addition, Durethan and Pocan enable carmakers and car parts suppliers to achieve considerable savings through cheaper production and easier assembly.

Plastics currently account for only around seven percent of the material used in vehicles in China, compared to the proportion of 20 per cent in some other countries. There is still tremendous potential for growth here. With ongoing expansion plans, LANXESS Wuxi’s capacity for high-tech plastics will reach approximately 60,000 metric tons per year within 2011.

Says Martin Kraemer: “This investment reflects the growing demand for our high-tech plastics in China and is a further step on our course for profitable growth in this area.”

LANXESS has declared 2011 the Year of High-Tech Plastics. As part of the theme year, LANXESS will be initiating a series of events and taking part in trade fairs and exhibitions, for example Chinaplas 2011 from 17th to 20th May in Guangzhou, China, to highlight where high-tech plastics are used, the benefits they offer and, in particular, how they can also help ensure sustainable development.

The Semi-Crystalline Products business unit belongs to the Performance Polymers segment, which generated sales in 2010 of EUR 3.78 billion.  It employs around 1,500 people worldwide with current production sites in Belgium (Antwerp), Germany (Krefeld-Uerdingen and Hamm-Uentrop (JV)), and China (Wuxi).

LANXESS is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 7.1 billion in 2010 and currently around 14,850 employees in 24 countries. The company is represented at 45 production sites worldwide. The core business of LANXESS is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals.

Forward-Looking Statements
This news release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by LANXESS AG management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

Information for editors:
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You can find further information concerning LANXESS chemistry in our WebMagazine at webmagazine.lanxess.com.

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