New resins unit to supply wind energy market / Failed bid to acquire Huntsman leads to 2008 loss
Hexion Specialty Chemicals (Columbus, Ohio / USA; www.hexion.com) is to build a production unit in Esslingen / Germany, to manufacture speciality epoxy resins for use in the fabrication of windmill blades for the wind energy market. The 10,000m2 facility will include production and warehousing as well as an applications laboratory. The plant will be a “blending only” operation and will not include chemical reactors. It will replace the facility of Bakelite subsidiary MGS Kunstharzprodukte GmbH (D-70327 Stuttgart; www.mgs-online.com). The 50 employees at the Stuttgart site will transfer to Esslingen when the unit is commissioned in the third quarter of 2009.

Hexion said that additional jobs may be created at Esslingen to accommodate anticipated growth in the business. The materials produced at the new plant will include bonding pastes and infusion resins used in the fabrication of wind turbine blades that power windmills in wind energy farms. Hexion said that its speciality epoxy resins provide the mechanical strength, durability, stress resistance and performance required of modern blades, which can be up to 60m in length.

Meanwhile, the company has reported an operating loss of USD 893m for 2008, compared with a profit of USD 302m in 2007. The loss reflected a charge of USD 1.03 bn in the fourth quarter of 2008 relating to Hexion’s failure to acquire Huntsman (Salt Lake City, Utah / USA; www.huntsman.com) – see Plasteurope.com of 11.03.2009. Hexion’s sales increased by 5% year-on-year to USD 6.1 bn in 2008, thanks to positive pricing, the impact of acquisitions – which added USD 158m in incremental revenues – and favourable foreign currency translation.

Wind turbine blades can be up to 60m in length (Photo: LM Glasfiber)
16.03.2009 Plasteurope.com [213003]
Published on 16.03.2009
German version...German version of this article...
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