BASF and Zelfo Technology have signed an agreement for the transfer of IP rights of the latest Zelfo processing technology for the efficient and cost-effective production of micro-fibrillated cellulose. The newly developed technology concerns the engineering of superior micro-fibrillated cellulose which is used to produce a wide variety of paper, board and tissue products. This technology allows significant improvement in strength and weight reduction to address for example, the need for lighter, stronger paper-based packaging. Financial details of the cooperation were not announced.
BASF aims to further improve Zelfo's fibre technology through a wide range of chemical additives for paper making. BASF's expertise in chemistry is essential for MFC technology to function efficiently on an industrial scale and to support the use of cellulosic, recyclable and biodegradable materials in the process.
"The cooperation combines BASF's chemistry with Zelfo Technology's know-how and patented process for optimized cellulosic raw materials," said Uwe Liebelt, President of BASF's Paper Chemicals division. "Together we are uniquely positioned to address the needs of the packaging industry for increased recyclability coupled with superior performance."
Each partner has defined exclusive industry fields to apply this technology. BASF will focus on all applications related to paper, board, packaging and tissue. Zelfo Technology will continue its main activities in non VOC emitting binders and bio-composite based applications. Both companies will collaborate to scale-up the technology and will continue to work closely together. Zelfo Technology has a unique position in modern cellulose material science and has won several awards for its technical achievements in producing special cellulose composite based products.
"BASF is leading in chemistry and Zelfo Technology is a pioneer in cellulosic material science. Our recently concluded agreements with BASF will accelerate the full industrial scale-up of the process for the benefit of both companies," said Richard Hurding, CEO of Zelfo Technology. "By offering enhanced cellulosic materials such as MFC, not only wood pulp but also recycled pulp and agricultural cellulose waste can all be upgraded to produce superior pulp additive grades for better products and more sustainable packaging."
BASF is the world's leading chemical company: The Chemical Company. Its portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. We combine economic success, social responsibility and environmental protection. Through science and innovation we enable our customers in almost all industries to meet the current and future needs of society. Our products and system solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring healthy food and nutrition and helping to improve the quality of life. We have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF posted sales of about €73.5 billion in 2011 and had more than 111,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN).
About BASF's Paper Chemicals division
BASF's Paper Chemicals division offers process chemicals to optimize costs and increase machine efficiency, functional chemicals to lend specific properties to paper, and finishing chemicals to improve the appearance and performance characteristics of printed paper and board. With this comprehensive portfolio, BASF is the leading supplier of paper chemicals worldwide.
BASF established Paper Chemicals as a separate division when it acquired Ciba in April 2009.
The ISO 9001-certified Paper Chemicals division operates sites in Europe, Asia and the Americas.
About Zelfo Technology
Zelfo Technology GmbH is focused on the development and optimisation of cellulosic materials for the advancement of sustainable manufacturing. Zelfo® fibre solutions are offered through Zelfo Technology GmbH and are the result of several years of know-how and patented systems development. A pool of in-house expertise and a series of international partnerships substantiate the company's bio-based materials, as well as design and manufacturing knowledge. The company is headquartered in Germany with bases in in France and the United Kingdom.