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Composites acquisition strengthens Ashland’s position in the SMC/BMC market in Europe

News International-French

20 Jun 2017

The recent addition of a composites manufacturing facility in France, combined with an investment in new lab facilities and equipment in Finland, has strengthened Ashland’s position in the European sheet and bulk moulding compounds (SMC/BMC) market.

Earlier this month, Ashland completed the acquisition of a 50-person manufacturing facility in Etain, France, from Reichhold. The facility makes unsaturated polyester resins (UPR) used in a variety of end markets, including transportation, electrical and construction.

This acquisition, coupled with recently opened lab facilities dedicated to SMC/BMC at Ashland’s European Research and Development center in Porvoo, Finland, will allow the company’s Composites business to test all analytical parameters of the resin and compound to better serve its Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) based sheet and bulk moulding compounds (SMC/BMC) customers.

Among the key features of the new lab are devices for resins characterization, viscosity and thickening measurement, surface analysis, and mechanical properties, as well as a 1,000 Kilo Newton press.

“With the new lab, we can accelerate new product development, innovation and validation of products before launch,” said Alessandro Lago, Ashland director of sales, EMEA. “The lab will be able to replicate exact customer conditions will significantly reduce the time-to-market for our products.”

“I believe with Ashland being the number 1 player in the SMC/BMC market in North America, we can really leverage off a comprehensive portfolio and the know-how to better serve our customers in Europe,” added Stefan Osterwind, vice president, Composites, EMEA.