WACKER Opens Technical Center for Polymer and Silicone Applications in India
Munich / Mumbai - The Munich-based chemical company WACKER is strengthening its presence in India by opening a technical center in Mumbai. The facility will serve as a regional competence center for developments and applications in the construction, coatings, plastics and textile coatings industry, the main focus being on construction polymers, silicone emulsions, sealants, silanes and silicone resins. The new technical center will enable WACKER to tap the fast-growing markets in this part of the world. The investment is aimed at providing local support to customers for developing new and customized products while promoting internationally recognized quality standards in India. In 2008, WACKER generated annual sales of nearly €50 million with more than 140 employees in India.
The technical center is located in Goregaon, a suburb of Mumbai, and is shared by Wacker Chemie India Pvt. Ltd., a 100 percent subsidiary, and the joint venture Wacker Metroark Chemicals Pvt. Ltd, where WACKER holds 51 percent of the shares. A few weeks ago, the sales subsidiaries moved into a newly constructed building with offices covering about 11,000 square feet (1,000 m2). The new center will offer WACKER POLYMERS’ and WACKER SILICONES’ customers support in developing new products and product applications for the Indian market, and in conducting comparative lab testing of construction products with regards to locally available raw materials, climatic conditions and regional construction methods.
The focus is on VINNAPAS® dispersible polymer powder formulations for manufacturing polymer-modified dry-mix mortars for the regional construction industry. Additional products to be emphasized are polymer dispersions, silicone emulsions, silicone resins, silanes and sealants. Bundling a sales and technical center under one roof enables closer teamwork between the sales and development teams, resulting in optimal customer support.
Vigorous growth in India’s economy, particularly in the construction and coatings sector, prompted setting up this new technical center. With it, WACKER wants to bolster its technological leadership in top-quality chemical raw materials. “The Mumbai technical center is another important milestone in our growth strategy for Asia and particularly India,” explained Dr. Willhelm Sittenthaler, WACKER Executive Board member responsible for Asia, at the opening ceremony. The objective is to meet the individual needs of Indian customers locally and to support and test new applications, added Sittenthaler. In this way, the Munich-based WACKER Group intends to further consolidate and expand its market position in collaboration with customers. Like its counterparts in Germany, the USA, Russia, China, Korea, Singapore, Brazil, Australia and the United Arab Emirates, the new center in Mumbai will serve to establish a strong technical support network for developing individual, tailor-made solutions locally. The technical center Mumbai is furnished with state-of-the-art laboratory and test equipment. But, that’s not all: the “WACKER House” itself also serves as a reference and demonstration object – as most of the products used in constructing the building contained WACKER technologies. These range from polymer-modified tile adhesives and grout mortars, self-leveling compounds, polymer-based wood and carpet glues, silicone sealants to seal windows and doors, silicone resin emulsion paints for the exterior façade to dispersion paints for indoor use and cyclodextrin-fragrance-complexes in the wall paints.
Another highlight is the integral training center for the field of construction chemicals: the WACKER ACADEMY. Its purpose is to promote the transfer of knowledge to local customers, applicators and business partners. Catering to the specific needs of the Indian construction chemicals sector, its curriculum provides an opportunity to learn about all relevant aspects of modern polymer and silicone chemistry and their applications. Close proximity to the applications labs fosters a lively exchange of expertise and lays the optimal groundwork for customer service. Thus, the WACKER ACADEMY offers an ideal platform for sector-specific networking between customers, distribution partners and WACKER specialists.
The WACKER Group has already been supplying chemicals to India since the 1970s. In 1998, the joint venture Wacker Metroark Chemicals Pvt. Ltd. has been established in Kolkata, as early as 1999, the site started up production of different silicone products. The local subsidiary, Wacker Chemie India Pvt. Ltd., was founded in 2007 in response to increasing market demands and potentials.
WACKER POLYMERS is a leading producer of state-of-the-art binders and polymer additives in the form of dispersible polymer powders and dispersions, polyvinyl acetates, surface coating resins and polyvinyl alcohol solutions. These products are used by companies in the construction, automotive, paper and adhesives sectors, as well as by manufacturers of printing inks and surface coatings. WACKER POLYMERS has production sites in Germany, China and the USA, as well as a global sales network and technical centers in all major regions.
WACKER SILICONES is one of the world’s largest silicone manufacturers, with over 3,000 highly specialized and innovative products. The division’s portfolio ranges from silicone fluids, emulsions, resins, elastomers and sealants to silanes and pyrogenic silicas. These products stand out due to their significant value-adding potential – enhancing both the benefits and performance of customers’ end products. Silicone products from WACKER SILICONES find application in such sectors as construction, chemicals, cosmetics, textiles, automotive, paper and electronics.
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