Sponsored By

Sabic and SK Global Chemical, have successfully concluded negotiations for a 50-50 joint venture that will purchase the rights to Nexlene solution technology and a plant that manufactures a range of high-performance ethylene/alpha-olefin polyolefin plastic, elastomer and plastomer (POE/POP) copolymers in Ulsan, Korea, from SK Global. The purchase price for the technology and plant is approximately $640 million.

July 6, 2015

3 Min Read
Saudi-Korean  metallocene elastomer JV formalized

Sabic and SK Global Chemical, have successfully concluded negotiations for a 50-50 joint venture that will purchase the rights to Nexlene solution technology and a plant that manufactures a range of high-performance ethylene/alpha-olefin polyolefin plastic, elastomer and plastomer (POE/POP) copolymers in Ulsan, Korea, from SK Global. The purchase price for the technology and plant is approximately $640 million. The deal was initially mooted in June last year.

SABICSKJV_PressReleasePhoto_3July2015._lo_res.jpg

Abdulrahman Al Fageeh, Sabic EVP Polymers (right), and
Cha Hwa Youp, SK CEO (left) signed a joint venture agreement
between Sabic and SK Global Chemical on July 3, 2015, in Seoul, Korea, to manufacture high-performance polyethylene products using cutting edge Nexlene solution technology developed by SK.

With the start-up of its POE/POP plant in South Korea, SK Global joins a select group of players supplying these products used primarily in plastic modification and film applications, including ExxonMobil Chemical (Houston, TX) with its Vistamaxx and Exact resins, Dow Chemical (Midland MI) with its Affinity and Engage offerings, and Mitsui Elastomers (Singapore) with its Tafmer product range. LG Chem (Seoul) is another recent Korean firm that has entered the POE field, marketing its products under the Lucene brand.

The joint venture holding company, Sabic SK Nexlene Company (SSNC) is headquartered in Singapore. Its wholly owned subsidiary, Korea Nexlene Company (KNC), owns the plant in Ulsan, which has an annual capacity of 230,000 tonnes. The parties intend to further expand capacity with the construction and operation of additional plants globally.

The plant will produce metallocene-based linear low-density polyethylene, POPs and POEs to meet the growing needs of diverse industries such as flexible packaging, industrial and agricultural film, automotive, consumer products (footwear), medical, and construction.

Yousef Al-Benyan, Sabic's Acting Vice Chairman and CEO, said, "We are very pleased to launch this partnership with SK Global Chemical, which is the latest stage in Sabic's global expansion. By growing our presence in Korea we are opening up new markets globally and reinforcing our position as a global leader, a major goal of our 2025 strategy."

Abdulrahman Al-Fageeh, Sabic EVP, said the new venture would enable both partners to grow in the highly specialized polyethylene market by providing high-value polymer products to global customers. "The solidification of our partnership with SK Global Chemical will complement our polymers portfolio and enable us to offer a more varied, cost-effective and customer-focused selection of products," he said.

The packaging industry will reportedly benefit from lighter versions of Nexlene (mLLDPE) for producing films to manufacture flexible food packaging and wrapping materials. They can also be used in pipes and consumer goods, such as rotomolded articles.

Metallocene polyolefin elastomers have applications in a number of industries where elasticity is important, including impact modifiers in the automotive industry, footwear in consumer markets, and wire coatings in the utilities and construction industries.

Metallocene polyolefin plastomers are designed to provide heat-seal strength for a variety of packaging products that can help provide inner sealing, adhesion, and a barrier against air and moisture.

Sign up for the PlasticsToday NewsFeed newsletter.

You May Also Like