Featured Articles

Q1 earnings at Dow, ExxonMobil, and BASF point to global plastics demand growth

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: April 29th, 2010

Year-over-year earnings reports show how far the global plastics industry has come since the start of 2009, with plastics titans Dow, ExxonMobil Chemical, and BASF showing double-digit gains in sales and volumes, even in Western economies that had heretofore lagged.

Steel prices set to climb on heels of deal

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: April 29th, 2010

CNBC.com reports that global steel prices are set to increase by up to a third as miners and steelmakers agreed to a ground-breaking change in the iron ore price system. The new deal will raise the cost of anything that uses steel, including molds. The deal by Vale of Brazil and Anglo-Australian BHP Billiton with Japanese and Chinese mills marks the end of the 40-year-old benchmark system of annual contracts and lengthy price negotiations. The industry instead agreed to move to quarterly contracts linked to the nascent iron ore spot market.

Borouge breaks ground for Middle Eastern innovation center

By Stephen Moore
Published: April 29th, 2010

Giving a boost to R&D in the Middle East, polyolefins supplier Borouge broke ground for its new Innovation Centre in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on April 27.

With a total investment in excess of US$70 million in equipment and facilities, the center will work together with the European innovation centers of Borealis as well as with local and international educational institutions such as the Petroleum Institute of Abu Dhabi, to further develop the competence of polymer science in the United Arab Emirates. It is expected to be completed at the end of 2011.

Sales—and clamp force—on the rise at Wittmann Battenfeld

By Matt Defosse
Published: April 29th, 2010

Kottingbrunn, Austria—Celebrating a return to profitability and the arrival of about 500 attendees to its two-day Competence Days event this week, officials at injection molding machine and auxiliaries manufacturer Wittmann Battenfeld had plenty to talk about during a Wednesday evening press conference. The company has re-entered the large machine market, expanded and improved its micromolding offerings, and increased the range of clamp forces offered for its electric machines.

Sabic Innovative Plastics gears up to respond to recovery

By Stephen Moore
Published: April 28th, 2010

With the official start-up of its 140,000-tonnes/yr compounding operation for polypropylene (PP) in Genk, Belgium this March, Sabic Innovative Plastics (Pittsfield, MA) has augmented its slate of solutions for the automotive sector from filled PP grades through to advanced engineering plastics.

Processor’s downstream solutions rescue up-the-creek canoe maker

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: April 28th, 2010

Demand for watercraft manufacturer NuCanoe’s new canoes outpaced supply, causing some dealers to wait weeks for orders to be filled. Rotomolder MOD offered the requisite paddle, and with its help, NuCanoe cut lead times by 93%.

The delivery holdups caused NuCanoe’s director of business development, Blake Young, to search for a new contract manufacturer to handle processing and logistics, and his search took him to Meese Orbitron Dunne Co. (MOD; Ashtabula, OH). MOD operates 23 rotomolding machines at four plants in the U.S.
 

How do you leave what you built?

By Clare Goldsberry
Published: April 27th, 2010

Many mold shop owners are getting ready to retire or are even well past retirement age, so the question of what to do with the business—especially a thriving, growing business—becomes particularly vexing. One company found an answer.

Invista enters China polyamide market

By Stephen Moore
Published: April 27th, 2010

After announcing its entry into the nylon 6/6 business at last year’s NPE, Invista (Wichita, KS) chose the venue of the Chinaplas Show in Shanghai to announce its launch of an engineering polymers business in China.

Want to learn how to evaluate the resin market?

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: April 27th, 2010

Plastics processors interested in learning how to evaluate the market and make strategic buying decisions about resin—and get market updates along with a 30-, 60- and 90-day action plan and resin strategy—may want to consider attending the RTi Resin Pricing Forum in Fort Worth, TX on June 8-10. Topics include strategies for saving on the cost of a host of commonly processed resins, plus negotiating tips and outlooks for a number of materials.

TPE North American resin pricing, April 19-23: PE down slightly, PP plummets $0.08/lb

By PlasticsToday Staff
Published: April 27th, 2010

Polyethylene (PE) activity was high last week, but there were more inquiries than actual transactions as prices continued to slide, dropping another $0.01-$.02/lb. Spot-trading platform, The Plastics Exchange (TPE) reported that spot resin availability improved last week, pushing prices lower than when the month began. Producers were unable to implement the $0.05/lb price increase that they sought in April, but contract prices remain $0.18/lb higher for the year.

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