Elkem announces expansion to support growth in demand for specialty silicones in EMEA and the Americas
Lyon, France, October 27, 2021 / PRNewswire / – Elkem, a global leader in advanced silicon-based materials, today announces a strategic investment plan to unlock a new specialty silicones offering for customers of Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and the Americas. The company will invest around 36 million euros (NOK 350 million) to modernize and relieve congestion at its upstream silicone factory in Roussillon, France.
The board of directors approved a capacity extension of 20,000 metric tonnes, increasing the effective capacity of intermediate silicones at the upstream Elkem plant in Roussillon, France to 100,000 metric tons per year, while improving productivity, costs, sustainability and climate protection.
“At a time when silicones and their raw materials are in short supply, expansion is the cornerstone to meet the future needs of our specialty silicone customers in the EMEA region and the Americas, where the market is expected to grow by approximately 6% per year between 2020 and 2025 ”, declared Frédéric Jacquin, Senior Vice President in charge of the Silicones Division of Elkem. “This investment complements the continued expansion of the capacity of our Xinghuo site in China, which mainly serves growth in the Asia Pacific region and further strengthens our position in terms of costs and our environmental performance. “
Specialty silicones bring unique properties and performance to a wide range of cutting-edge and sustainability-aligned markets – from electric and hybrid vehicles to semiconductors, carbon-free energy, 3D printing, healthcare and medical devices, aerospace , defense or sustainable buildings.
The investment plan includes the installation of new equipment and major technological upgrades in key parts of the plant in order to improve the cost position and environmental performance of Elkem Roussillon, through improved plant efficiency. materials, more energy-efficient processes, reduced waste and state-of-the-art aqueous effluents. processing. This is the largest organic investment project in Elkem’s European silicone franchise in a decade. It is expected to go live in the third quarter of 2023.
This decision confirms the strategic importance of the Rhône Valley for Elkem’s silicone division, after the company announced an agreement to acquire a third manufacturing site in the region and to open a new one. global research and innovation center in recent months.
It also underlines Elkem’s commitment to the Roussillon chemical platform, which is undergoing significant transformations to protect its competitiveness and decarbonize its operations, thanks to dynamic partnerships between industrial and local players – including Elkem.
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