BASF Strengthens EU Position in Engineering Plastics

02 September 2005

BASF has signed a contract to acquire Leuna-Miramid GmbH, Leuna (Germany) to extend its position in engineering plastics in Europe.

Leuna-Miramid has approximately 140 employees. Financial details of the transaction, which is still subject to approval by the relevant authorities, were not disclosed.

“Leuna-Miramid is an ideal fit with our engineering plastics business, in which we want to achieve further profitable growth,” said Roberto Gualdoni, head of BASF’s business unit Engineering Plastics Europe. “The acquisition backs up our goal to be our customers’ preferred partner,” he added.

“Combining our expertise in the field of engineering plastics will provide an advantage for our customers. As part of BASF we will be able to develop many innovative products and new applications,” said Thomas Schümann, managing director of Leuna-Miramid GmbH.

Leuna-Miramid GmbH was established in 1995 and has a production capacity of approximately 30,000 metric tons per year. The company specializes in the production and compounding of engineering plastics. During the compounding process, plastic granules are melted and mixed with additives such as glass fibres or minerals to produce tailor-made engineering plastics that meet customers’ specific needs.

In the coming years, BASF expects the European market for engineering plastics to grow by more than 5 percent per year. As well as focusing on Europe, BASF is seeking to capitalize on the global market potential of engineering plastics in North America and Asia. In spring 2005, BASF announced two projects for the Asian growth market: the construction of a new compounding plant in Shanghai, China, and the expansion of its existing compounding plant in Pasir Gudang, Malaysia.

The acquisition of Leuna-Miramid is BASF’s third acquisition in engineering plastics in the last three years. In 2003, BASF acquired and successfully integrated Honeywell’s global engineering plastics business as well as Ticona’s nylon 6,6 business.

Particularly innovative applications of BASF's polymers include specific intake manifolds, oil sumps, gear control units, sensors, cylinder head covers, and highly integrated laserstructurable electronic devices, many of which have been made with glass fibre reinforcements. BASF markets nylon under the trademarks Ultramid and Capron. Other engineering plastics from BASF include Ultradur (PBT: polybutylene terephthalate), Ultraform (POM: polyoxymethylene) and Ultrason (PSU, PES: polysulfone, polyethersulfone).

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