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Synthomer plc announced that it has agreed to acquire the entire issued and to be issued share capital of Omnova Solutions Inc., which develops, manufactures and markets polymers, dispersions, elastomers and other speciality chemicals. The acquisition is expected to complete in late 2019 / early 2020 following receipt of regulatory approvals and satisfaction of other closing conditions.

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Ineos has appointed Wood as program management partner for its planned ethane cracker and world-scale propane dehydrogenation (PDH) unit at its site in Antwerp, Belgium. Under the contract, which is effective immediately, Wood will oversee the execution of the EUR 3 billion petrochemical complex for the duration of the project. Value of the contract was not disclosed.

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Perstorp announced that it will investigate the potential production of recycled methanol, using carbon dioxide and residual streams, at its Swedish facility in Stenungsund. The Swedish Energy Agency (SEA) will partly finance this feasibility study.

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Orion Engineered Carbons S.A. announced that it will expand its production capacity for gas blacks at its Cologne (Kalscheuren) plant in Germany. The company said that it is responding to the continuously growing global market for waterborne and solventborne coatings by debottlenecking its gas black production. The gas blacks are said to feature very good fineness and a very narrow particle size distribution to provide the deepest blackness for demanding coatings applications.

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The new “Market Study: Fillers – Europe” from market research company Ceresana provides a description and analysis of the European market for fillers, including forecasts until 2026. Ceresana has already analysed the global market for these important materials several times. Now, the company has published a study on the European fillers market for the first time. Fillers not only make many products cheaper, they often also improve their properties, such as stability, weather-resistance, and electrical conductivity. According to the study, the European demand for ground calcium carbonate (GCC), precipitated calcium carbonate (PCC), kaolin, talc, carbon black, and other fillers will presumably increase to about 18 million t in 2026.

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Evonik announced that it has started up on schedule its new plant complex in Antwerp, Belgium, for the production of fumed silica. With this, it can now serve the high demand for fumed silicas marketed under the Aerosil brand, said the company. Typical applications include paints and coatings, advanced adhesive systems, transparent silicones, and non-flammable insulation materials. Evonik said it has invested a sum in the upper double-digit million euro range in the new plant complex.

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Nouryon announced that it has increased production capacity for dialkyl peroxide by 25 % after completing a major expansion project at its Ningbo, China, site. The product, branded as Perkadox 14, is essential in the manufacture of many elastomer-based products, ranging from sports goods to industrial wires and cables.

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Faurecia announced the creation of a global centre of expertise for hydrogen storage systems at its R+D centre in Bavans, France. The company said it will invest in research and development of new-generation high-pressure tanks that are more efficient and lighter, as well as in a test centre to characterise these tanks.

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As part of an organisational realignment, BASF will reduce its workforce by a total of about 6,000 positions until the end of 2021. As a result, the company expects savings of EUR 300 million as part of the ongoing excellence programme, which is anticipated to contribute EUR 2 billion to earnings annually from the end of 2021 onwards.

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Ingeborg Gross, the owner of the Schill+Seilacher/Struktol Group, died on 17 June 2019 following a short illness. According to the company, Ingeborg Gross was an icon at the helm of the group for many years.

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