BASF said on Wednesday that it will form a global business unit (GBU) combining all of its pigments activities effective January 2016. In the second half of 2016, BASF intends to carve out its pigments business and establish separate legal entities. With sales of about €1 billion ($1.09 billion) in 2014 and 2,500 employees globally, BASF holds a leading position in the pigments market. The new GBU will likely be headquartered in the Ludwigshafen area. All employees who are dedicated to the pigments business will be transferred to the new GBU. BASF says that establishing separate legal entities will give the company the freedom to “evaluate all possible options.” It declines to say whether it is looking to sell the operation.
BASF’s pigments serve industries such as paints & coatings, printing & packaging and plastics. The portfolio comprises of color pigments such as phthalocyanines, high performance pigments, azo pigments, effect pigments, inorganic pigments, dyes and pigment preparations. 13 production sites are affected by the restructuring. They are Ludwigshafen, Besingheim and Cologne in Germany; Monthey, Switzerland; Huningue, France; Maastricht, Netherlands; Hartwell, Piikskill, North Charleston and Newport in the US; Ulsan, Korea; and Nanjing and Shanghai in China.
“We have achieved and maintained a leading position in the pigments market through acquisitions and a series of successful restructuring measures. The new global business unit will fully concentrate on the pigments business and thus be even more focused on supporting the needs of our pigments customers,” said Markus Kramer, president of BASF’s dispersions & pigments division.
Alexander Haunschild, senior v.p. of the regional business unit pigments and resins/Europe and appointed head of the GBU, said, ” By creating an organization fully dedicated to pigments, we will adapt better to the challenges in the pigments industry. Our customers will benefit from tailored services and higher responsiveness.”
By Natasha Alperowicz
Source: Chemical Week
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