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DSM, supplier of performance materials and industrial chemicals, opened its first Research & Development (R&D) Centre in Shanghai, China, earlier this week.
The DSM R&D Centre China will be the company’s main R&D base in the country and will form a vital part of DSM’s global R&D network. In addition to carrying out product and applications development work, the centre will support DSM’s businesses in several other ways: by tracking market trends, by proactively responding to the needs of customers, and through interaction with the external know-how infrastructure, such as partners in universities, scientific research institutes and industry. DSM Nutritional Products, DSM Food Specialties and DSM NeoResins will be the first three DSM businesses to operate facilities at this R&D Centre.
“”DSM began its first phase of long-term growth in China through technology licensing activities in the 1960s. For the past decade DSM has made significant investments in the country the second phase of long-term growth. Today, with the opening of the DSM R&D Centre China, DSM begins its third phase ,”” said Mr. Jan Zuidam, Deputy Chairman of DSM’s Managing Board of Directors. “”Establishing this R&D footprint in China gives us the opportunity to integrate better with China’s science and technology community and to get embedded into the Chinese business value chain.””
DSM also works closely with some of the world’s most innovative R&D partners, exchanging scientific and technological knowledge with some 2,000 university departments worldwide. DSM currently owns 13,000 patents, covering 2,500 individual inventions; some 250 patent filings take place every year.
In China, DSM is very active in seeking partnerships with research institutions to develop products and solutions that meet the needs of Chinese customers. The company’s various R&D units already have contacts with several leading Chinese universities. DSM and Fudan University’s joint lab will open later this month. The partnership will give the renowned Chinese institution the financial, technological, manufacturing and management support needed to exploit innovations to the fullest.
DSM’s expansion represents their second major investment in China in 2005. In March this year DSM Engineering Plastics expanded its compounding capacity, which included new compounding lines, doubling total capacity for their Stanyl PA46, Akulon PA6 and Arnite polyesters.
These high-performance engineering plastics are used for instance in LCD displays, computers, games, mobile phones and cars. The existing facilities in Zhouzhuang in Jiangyin, Jiangsu province in China will be relocated to a new state of the art plant in Jiangyin Hitech Development Zone. The total investment at the new site will be some tens of millions USD. Operations at the new site will start in 2006.
Speaking in March this year, Stefan Sommer, President of DSM China said that “China is a market which plays a key role in DSM’s overall growth strategy. The expansion of the production capacities of DSM Engineering Plastics and DSM Composite Resins in China highlights DSM’s strong commitment to China. The results reflect this commitment: in 2004, DSM generated sales of EUR 420 million in China, a growth of 25 % compared to 2003.”
DSM have invested heavily on R&D over the years with last years (2004) total R&D expenditure amounting to EUR 286 million, around 4% of net sales. Worldwide, DSM has approximately 2,000 R&D staff organized around a range of competences at the forefront of technology.
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