News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

September 28, 2011

Cabot Corp. expanding global carbon black production

Filed under: Carbon Black, Silica — Notch @ 8:39 am

A staff report in the European Rubber Journal summarizes Cabot Corp.’s global carbon black expansions. Cabot is expanding three facilities in Europe and plants in Argentina, Brazil, China, and Indonesia. Investment in the expansions totals $180 million over the next two years. Cabot’s carbon black output will be increased by 15% (over 300,000 metric tons) with the expansion completions in 2013. Cabot has also embarked on fumed silica and masterbatch projects in Wales and China that will upgrade its production base in Europe and Asia.

Basic structure of carbon black industry changes radically with latest acquisitions

Filed under: Carbon Black — Notch @ 8:06 am

Mike McNulty at Rubber & Plastics News recently did a piece on recent restructuring in the carbon black industry focusing on the June purchase of Marietta, Georgia-based Columbian Chemicals Co. by Aditya Birla Group of India and Evonik Industries A.G.’s sale in August of its carbon black business, now called Orion Engineered Carbons, to New York-headquartered Rhone Capital L.L.C. and Jersey, England-based Triton Advisors Ltd. have shuffled the ranking of the top carbon black companies. Orion slipped from second to third. Cabot Corp., the long-time #1, is positioned either barely ahead of the Birla Group, slightly behind it or tied with the Indian conglomerate, depending on the figures being used.

Mike quotes Notch Consulting in the article to the effect that the top tier of the carbon black industry hasn’t changed much in the last 20 years but it certainly has with the completion of these two acquisitions. In particular, the acquisition of Columbian changes the industry’s perception of Aditya Birla from a fast-growing upstart to a dominant player across all regions.

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