BASF to Reduce Latex Production Capacity in Europe

Jan. 23, 2014 - BASF announced that it is implementing a series of measures in its paper chemicals business that includes a reduction in the capacity of its European latex manufacturing network by 120,000 metric tons per year in Europe.

BASF said the capacity cut is in response to decreasing market demand.

Customers in Europe will continue to be supplied from three BASF plants in Ludwigshafen, Germany, Pischelsdorf, Austria and Hamina, Finland.

In addition, BASF will further optimize its paper chemicals portfolio by evaluating strategic options for its alkyl ketene dimer (AKD) business in Europe and North America.

At the same time, BASF will adjust marketing, sales and administrative functions in its paper chemicals business to better reflect regional market dynamics.

Due to the planned measures, approximately 250 positions in production, marketing, sales and administration will be reduced by end of 2015.

BASF said that it will continue to expand its newly established Center for Sustainable Paper Packaging.

"We aim to grow our new business line of sustainable solutions for packaging manufacturers. In this area, licensing of intellectual property, development partnerships and smaller acquisitions are possible," said Dr. Uwe Liebelt, President of the Paper Chemicals division.

Recently, BASF signed an agreement with the French company BT3 technologies S.A.S. to evaluate the joint development of an alternative to wax in corrugated packaging board in order to facilitate recycling.

"Altogether these measures will position the paper chemicals business to be more responsive to market and customer needs while showing significantly improved profitability. These steps reinforce BASF's commitment to the paper industry," Liebelt added.