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2018 marked the first Chinaplas exhibition in Hongqiao, Shanghai, and the show was a great success. Chinaplas 2020 is scheduled to return to the National Exhibition and Convention Center in Hongqiao, Shanghai, China, on 21 – 24 April 2020. The event is expected to present 340,000 m2 of exhibition space, bring together 3,900+ global exhibitors and 180,000+ visitors. According to Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd., the show organizer of Chinaplas, economic and political uncertainty remains a top challenge for today’s global manufacturing industry. A host of factors including trade friction, economic slowdown, and weakening demand from China are dampening manufacturing growth and leaving some sectors in a decline. In the meantime, China is pushing to transform its manufacturing industry to focus on higher quality and domestic market while encouraging foreign investment.

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Brenntag North America, Inc., part of the Brenntag Group, a specialist in chemical and ingredients distribution, announced the opening of its new Coatings & Construction Technology & Innovation Center in Allentown, PA, USA.

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Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC) announced that it will acquire the thermoplastic polyurethane elastomer (TPU) business of AdvanSource Biomaterials Corporation (ASB) with headquarters in Wilmington, MA, USA. ASB achieved net sales of approximately USD 3 million in fiscal year 2018. MCC said it plans to complete the acquisition in January 2020 through Mitsubishi Chemical Performance Polymers, Inc. located in Greer, SC, USA, a subsidiary engaged in the performance polymers business. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.

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According to BASF, its expanded thermoplastic polyurethane (E-TPU) Infinergy created a real stir when it was launched on the market in the adidas Boost running shoe, because it introduced a completely new class of particle foams to the plastics market. Today, customers from a wide range of different industries use the material – from comfortable safety footwear and a dynamic tennis racket to a cushioning sports floor. At K 2019, the material was presented with a multitude of its applications and innovative approaches. Infinergy is used, for example, in the Vision Venture, a camper van from Hymer, as a step, bed edge and as a comfort element in the slatted frame.

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According to Covestro, the manufacture of a shoe requires a multitude of work steps, some of which are carried out by hand. This makes production time-consuming and expensive. In the finished product, various materials are sewn together and glued together, so that it is virtually impossible to recycle them by type at the end of their useful life.

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Lanxess has set itself an ambitious climate protection target. By 2040, the company intends to become climate neutral and eliminate its greenhouse gas emissions from around 3.2 million t of CO2e today. Already by 2030, Lanxess aims to cut its emissions by 50 % compared to the current level to around 1.6 million t of CO2e.

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The year 2020 will be an anniversary year in three respects for the IKV – Institute for Plastics Processing in Industry and Craft at RWTH Aachen University: The RWTH Aachen University celebrates its 150th anniversary, IKV will celebrate its 70th birthday and it will be the 30th time it stages the International Colloquium Plastics Technology – on 11 – 12 March 2020 in the Eurogress Aachen. The day before the Colloquium, on 10 March 2020, IKV will mark its anniversary by holding the International Symposium on Plastics Technology in the VIP area of the Tivoli soccer stadium. While the Colloquium will present the broad range of IKV research and will target primarily the plastics industry with its practice-oriented research, the Symposium will feature papers from scientists from 14 countries, and aims to arouse lively discussion between scientists and industry.

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Patrick Popp has been appointed as Faurecia Interiors Executive Vice-President. Effective from 2 January 2020, he will succeed Jean-Michel Renaudie.

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Adidas announced that production at its two Speedfactories in Ansbach, Germany, and Atlanta, GA, USA, will be discontinued by April 2020 at the latest. The company will continue to develop, improve and test manufacturing processes in Germany. Process innovations will be bundled and driven forward at the production site in Scheinfeld, the so-called adiLab. Starting at the end of 2019, the company will use its Speedfactory technologies to produce athletic footwear at two of its suppliers in Asia. Adidas said that it expects this to result in better utilisation of existing production capacity and more flexibility in product design.

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On 5 November 2019, Grammer AG signed an agreement with Changchun FAWSN Group Co., Ltd., Changchun, China, an affiliated company of FAW Group Co., Ltd., one of the largest automotive manufacturers in China, to establish a joint venture for automotive interior components. Grammer will be holding 50 % of the new joint venture Grammer FAWSN Vehicle Parts Co., Ltd. The other 50 % will be held by Changchun FAWSN Group Co., Ltd.

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