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27. May 2005

Recticel wants automotive trim partner

Recticel SA has announced that it is seeking a partner for its automotive interior trim activities and will approach potential investors over the coming months. The company said this would enable it to move from producing only skins for dashboards and door panels to the manufacturing complete components.

According to Recticel, an alliance would help “to ensure the arrival of new customers” for its Colofast Spray process. This patented technology enables the production of spray cast PUR films for lamination onto plastics substrates.

Recticel operates 11 Colofast Spray plants worldwide and also entered several licensing agreements for the technology. The company’s newest facility at Schönebeck, Germany, started up early this year producing PU skins for dashboards and door panels on the new VW Passat. In 2004, the company started employing the process at plants in Mallersdorf and Unterriexingen, Germany; and Teplice in the Czech Republic.

The Belgian company has forecast interior trim sales to reach around Euro200 million in 2005, compared to EUR153m, or about 12% of its total sales, last year. Growth is being driven by recent orders for Mercedes E-Class and Vita, BMW 5 Series and X3, as well as for new Honda and VW models, according to the company.

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