Wacker expands silicones production in Brazil in €7 million investment

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Wacker expands silicones production in Brazil in €7 million investment

March 02, 2017 - 18:05
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MUNICH, Germany, and JANDIRA, Brazil , March 2, 2017 (Press Release) -Wacker Chemie AG is expanding its silicone production at its Jandira site near São Paulo, Brazil. WACKER is currently building a multi-purpose facility to manufacture antifoam compounds and functional silicone fluids. The expansion is WACKER’s response to growing regional demand for specialty silicones needed in the textile, paper, household and personal care and cosmetics industry. Investments for the expansion will total around €7 million. While the reactor for silicone fluids is scheduled for completion in the second quarter of 2017, the plant for antifoam compounds is expected to come on stream by the end of the year. The new production facility will help the company to solidify its position as one of the world’s leading suppliers of high-quality silicones. In Jandira, WACKER already manufactures silicone products for the construction, textile and pulp and paper industries.

“In South and Middle America, the market for our silicone solutions is growing, especially in the personal care, household and textile sectors. In order to meet this increasing demand over the long term, we will extend our production in Jandira,” noted WACKER Executive Board member Auguste Willems. After the completion of the polysilicon production site in Tennessee, the Group has concluded its major investments and is now focusing on plants for intermediates, sales products and specialty products, he explained. “In this way, we intend to secure and further expand our position as a leading silicones manufacturer in the region, and provide a basis for future growth,” Willems added.

The new production complex is a key addition to the Jandira site’s supply chain. With the two new reactors for silicones fluids and antifoam compounds, WACKER is able to produce important precursors and starting materials for specialized antifoam, impregnating and release agents and for additives for the pulp and paper, cosmetics and household care industries.

“With the expanded silicones production in the year of WACKER’s 40th anniversary in Brazil, we can offer considerable added value to our local customers and partners,” said Adriano Magalhaes, managing director of Wacker Quimica do Brasil. “The new facility makes it possible to enlarge our portfolio and adapt our products even better to customer needs and local industry requirements.”

Thanks to their exceptional versatility and a unique property range, WACKER’s silicone products are key ingredients for the consumer care, textile and paper industry. In detergent applications, they can suppress foam formation or, when used in a fabric conditioners, impart a pleasant and soft feel to textiles and fabrics. Antifoam agents specially tailored to the pulp and paper industry further ensure smooth, reliable processes. In cosmetics and personal care applications, they enable highly effective formulations, for instance for nutrient-rich and moisturizing skin and body care products.

WACKER in Middle and South America

WACKER has been supplying the Americas with basic chemicals since as early as the mid-1960s. The company laid the foundation for its presence in Middle America with a separate sales office in Mexico in 1972. The local subsidiary Wacker Mexicana S.A. was founded in Mexico City in 1975. To meet the rising challenges to sales in South America, WACKER set up a wholly-owned subsidiary – Wacker Química do Brasil Ltda. – in Jandira, 35 km northwest of São Paulo, in 1977. Today, beside sales and marketing, the approx. 21,000-m² site houses its own production plant, which produces, for example, silicone fluids and emulsions, silicone-based antifoam agents, resins, rubber compounds and personal care products. In 2003, WACKER opened a technical center for silicone applications in Jandira, which was expanded in 2005 and 2013 to include labs for dispersible polymer powders and dispersions for construction applications. In spring 2010, WACKER established a local branch of its international training centers, the WACKER ACADEMY, at the Jandira technical center.