News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

October 3, 2012

Asia Carbon Industries upgrading three carbon black production lines to specialty grades

Filed under: Uncategorized — Notch @ 12:57 am

On September 27, Asia Carbon Industries announced plans to convert its three dry production lines located in Shanxi, China to specialty carbon black production lines. The project, which will be funded by cash from operations, is expected to begin on October 1, 2012 and finish in about three months at a total cost of approximately $4 million. Production will cease at the lines during the project.

The company expects that the specialty materials to be produced at the new facilities will generate significantly more revenues as a result of the higher sales prices. Specialty carbon black also has a broader range of uses as compared to the more traditional products; these include use as a pigmenting agent, UV stabilizer or conductive agent in a variety of products, such as plastics, toners and printing inks and coating, battery and electrical parts.

Each of the company’s dry production lines has an annual production capacity of 12,000 tons, operating at approximately 80% capacity, together the three dry production lines generate approximately $27 million revenue per year at the current price levels. Once the renovation has been completed, the production lines will each have an annual capacity of 6,000 tons, for a total of 18,000 tons of specialty carbon black per year. Projected revenue from specialty carbon black production at similar operating capacity is anticipated to be approximate $35 million annually.

Bridgestone moving forward with big US expansions

Filed under: Carbon Black, insoluble sulfur, Rubber Chemicals, Tires — Notch @ 12:44 am

Rubber News (subscription required) reports that Bridgestone Americas is progressing steadily on two expansion projects in South Carolina that entail more than $1.2 billion in investments. The projects involves an expansion of an existing PC/LT tire plant in Aiken County and the construction of a new OTR radial tire plant at a site about four miles away.

When its expansion is completed, the passenger and light truck tire plant will have a capacity of 37,750 tires per day. The two-phase project will cost nearly $350 million and is scheduled for completion in April 2015, according to Plant Manager John Stewart.

The OTR tire plant will cost about $900 million, and the facility will be the company’s first outside of Japan to use its radial tire technology for giant tires, said Norvel Smith, the factory’s general manager. Bridgestone expects to produce the first tire at the new plant in the first quarter of 2014, and the plant will reach full production in 2020, when it will have capacity to process 130 metric tons of rubber daily, producing tires from 49 to 63 inches in diameter.

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