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DuPont sells its Neoprene business to Denka

DuPont sells its Neoprene business to Denka

In a surprise announcement today, DuPont Performance Elastomers released the news that they are selling their renowned Neoprene™ polychloroprene business after 84 years. DuPont invented this type of synthetic rubber in 1931 and its Neoprene™ trade name has been synonymous with the material ever since, despite other versions of the elastomer becoming widely available in the marketplace. Denka Performance Elastomer LLC has been set up as a new joint venture company owned 70% by DENKA which was founded in 1915 in Japan, and 30% by Mitsui & Co. Ltd. Whilst the sale is not yet formally completed, and is subject to the customary regulatory approvals being granted, this should occur in early 2015. The terms of the deal between the parties is not disclosed. Neoprene has proven itself to be an extremely versatile elastomer over the years, and the chloroprene family of materials that it belongs to are widely used in applications that require good all round performance, having good oil, fuel and chemical resistance combined with good physical properties, weather resistance and a degree of flame retardency. Common items such as wet suits are made of this elastomer family, as well as automotive under-bonnet parts, aerospace and general industrial components.  Contact adhesives commonly use it as the base polymer in suspension with suitable solvents, and it is also used in coatings and insulation products. DuPont has a major facility producing Neoprene polychloroprene in North America its Pontchartrain Louisiana, and the US employees and facility are included in the transaction. “Neoprene has been an important product line within DuPont Performance Polymers and we believe it will truly thrive as part of the Denka Performance Elastomer portfolio,” said Patrick E. Lindner, president of DuPont Performance Polymers.  “This agreement further enables the DuPont Performance Polymers business to focus on innovative new offerings that drive profitable growth both today and over the long term.” Shinsuke Yoshitaka, DENKA president & CEO said “We are excited to welcome Neoprene and the employees who manage this product. Chloroprene rubber is our core business and the acquisition from DuPont will largely contribute to our further sustainable growth. Also, DENKA can establish a flexible supply structure with high-quality products. Furthermore, we expect to enjoy synergies with our Research & Development and technical services, which are our strengths. I believe that these positive effects will enable us to serve the market and the customers much better.” It remains to be seen how this acquisition will affect overall supply of chloroprene in the global marketplace, but with economic downturns in the major economies of europe and the far east, oversupply of elastomers of all types is currently an issue for operators in a number of regions. Author: Adam Hooper 10th December 2014

The post DuPont sells its Neoprene business to Denka appeared first on Martin’s Rubber Company.

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