Boosting Polyurethane capacities worldwide

Covestro has made investments in sustainable coating and adhesive raw materials. The capacities in Europe will significantly increase, as the chemicals maker has brought a new production facility on-stream in Germany and announced an expansion in Spain. Furthermore, Covestro will expand capacities in China and in the USA.
Covestro has begun operations at a new production facility for aqueouspolyurethane dispersions (PUDs) at its site in Dormagen, Germany. Along with a current expansion of production in Barcelona, the company is thus boosting its capacities in Europe significantly. To meet global demand, Covestro is also building a new facility in China, as well as planning to resume production in the United States and at the same time modernizing and expanding facilities there.
The new capacity is primarily needed to satisfy rising demand from the coatings and adhesives industry: manufacturers remain determined to replace solvent-based products with waterborne systems that have equally good properties.

Creating opportunities for growth

“With these investments, we are preparing for the continued growing demand for polyurethanedispersions as well as expanding our globally leading position,” says Michael Friede, global head of the Coatings, Adhesives, Specialties segment at Covestro. “At the same time, thanks to our diversified production, we have the flexibility to meet many different requirements.”
This diversity is also the key to the comprehensive line of polyurethane dispersions (PUDs) that Covestro offers. “Our custom-tailored products allow for many applications in very different industries,” Michael Friede explains. “In this way, we create opportunities for growth and strengthen our customers’ competitiveness.”

Market figures on polyurethane coatings

The market for polyurethane coatings is estimated to have a size of 3.2 to 3.5 million tonnes. Approximately 60 % of these volumes are consumed in Asia-Pacific. Europe account for some 20 %, followed by North America (15 %). The remaining 5 % are mainly consumed in Central and South America. The volumes are expected to hit nearly 4 million tonnes by 2020.
The largest consumers of polyurethane coatings are the wood and furniture industries with nearly 30 %. The automotive OEM segment accounts for 25 %. The shares for these two end-use industries may vary from region to region around the globe.

Big players

The five largest polyurtehane coatings producers who dominate the market are Akzo Nobel, PPG Industries, Sherwin-Williams, Axalta and Asian Paints. Together these five companies hold a market share of 50 %.
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