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Ascend acquires French compounder Eurostar

January 18/2021

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Ascend Performance Materials (Houston, Texas) has acquired Eurostar Engineering Plastics (Fosse, France), a compounder with a broad portfolio of flame-retardant (FR) engineered plastics and expertise in halogen-free formulations, said Chemweek.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company also says it is very close to obtaining FDA and EPA approval to make COVID-19-related claims for its Acteev Protect antimicrobial fabric technology. "We are following through on our strategy of becoming a more global, diversified and reliable supplier to our customers, says Phil McDivitt, Ascends president and CEO. "For us this is a play into a broader, more specified business. Eurostar is very strong technically." He notes that Eurostar has yellow-card certification from Underwriters Laboratories for over 100 flame-retardant polyamide products.

"Our purchase of Eurostar is a real accelerator," says McDivitt. "It greatly expands our FR portfolio--we believe it will give us the fullest FR line in the engineering plastics business. The challenge for Eurostar [has been that] it's a Europe-only company with one site. We're able to fully leverage our global footprint and take these products into the US and Asia."

Ascend, a fully integrated producer of nylon 6,6, acquired two other European businesses, Poliblend and Esseti Plast GD, from DOttavio Group in February 2020. That deal brought a manufacturing facility in Mozzate, Italy, Esseti Plast's masterbatch portfolio, and Poliblend's portfolio of engineering plastics, which included virgin and recycled grades of nylons 6 and 6,6, polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), and and polyoxymethylene (POM or polyacetal).

In June 2020, Ascend acquired the assets of NCM (Changshu) Co. and Tehe Engineering Plastic (Suzhou) Co. located in Changshu Yushan High-tech Industrial Park near Shanghai. Ascend intends to expand the compounding assets at the site and to establish a global research and development center.

"Between these acquisitions and the launch of our Acteev Protect line, it's been a very transformational year for Ascend," says McDivitt. Ascend launched the Acteev Protect antimicrobial technology, which embeds zinc oxide within the polymer lattice of nylon 6,6, in June. Ascend originally developed Acteev to control odor in fabrics by inhibiting bacterial growth, but over 350 third-party studies have shown it is also highly effective against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The company has been working with FDA and EPA since the second quarter of 2020, and it expects the agencies to approve the use of Acteev in masks and other applications to protect against SARS-CoV-2 during the first quarter of 2021.

Ascend has already produced millions of pounds of Acteev nylon 6,6, a portion of which the company used to make over 600,000 masks. "We see Acteev being a whole new part of Ascend," says McDivitt. "We'll have a medical side of the business and a non-medical side."

As per MRC, Ascend Performance Materials (Houston) has increased its prices, effective immediately, for adiponitrile (ADN), acrylonitrile, adipic acid, and hexamethylenediamine (HMDA). The prices of HMDA and ADN have each been hiked by USD350/metric ton, while acrylonitrile has been raised by USD200/metric ton. The price of adipic acid has been increased by USD100/metric ton. All the price rises are as contracts allow, with non-contract business prices determined on an order-by-order basis, it says.

We remind that Russia's output of chemical products rose in November 2020 by 9.5% year on year. At the same time, production of basic chemicals increased in the first eleven months of 2020 by 6.6% year on year, according to Rosstat's data. According to the Federal State Statistics Service of the Russian Federation, polymers in primary form accounted for the greatest increase in the January-November 2020 output. November production of polymers in primary form rose to 896,000 tonnes from 852,000 tonnes in October. Overall output of polymers in primary form totalled 9,240,000 tonnes over the stated period, up by 17.1%  year on year.
Author:Anna Larionova
Tags:compounding, compounds, medical supplies, Medicine, netkanie materiali, Ascend Performance Materials.
Category:General News
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