March 31, 2003
Ticona has postponed plans to ramp capacity for its Vectra liquid crystal polymers and Fortron polyphenylene sulfide resins in Europe. Much of Ticona’s LCP business comes from the electronics and telecommunications markets, which are currently depressed. Ticona ranks first and second in LCP and PPS capacity, respectively.
Also, the supplier will concentrate on compounding high-value grades of polybutylene terephthalate (PBT). At the same time, Ticona and DSM are continuing to evaluate a European-capacity PBT joint venture, although a final decision is delayed until later in 2003.
Stefan Sommer, who was president of Ticona until last month, had said that pbt overcapacity and slow market growth did not justify an additional plant. “We believe the value in PBT is in compounding,” he said. Ticona has a PBT plant in Shelby, NC, which supplies the North American and European markets.
Meanwhile, Celanese AG, parent company of Ticona, has replaced Sommer with Lyndon Cole as president, effective April 1. Cole joined Celanese last year from British chemicals supplier Elementis PLC, where he was CEO.
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