Paris - On February 25, 2015, Total acquired a majority 68% interest in Germany's Polyblend, which manufactures polymer plastics intended primarily for the automotive industry. The transaction is aligned with the Group's strategy of developing higher-value-added polymers and differentiating itself in markets away from commodity plastics.
Total recently began building two polypropylene compounding lines at the Carling Platform as part of its project to secure the French site's future. The lines are scheduled to start up in mid-2016.
"The acquisition allows Total to consolidate its position in the fast-growing market for polymers for automotive solutions," explains Philippe Sauquet, President of Total’s Refining & Chemicals. "Accentuated efforts to lighten vehicles to improve their efficiency mean that this type of product, whose technology is constantly evolving, enjoys a strong growth outlook. The Polyblend acquisition complements the current investment in new production lines at the Carling site. We will be able to tap expertise and synergies at the main facility in Carling and the Polyblend site in Bad Sobernheim, just 150 kilometers away, to productively expand in this field."
Polyblend produces compounds, which are blends of polymers (polyethylene and polypropylene) and other ingredients such as mineral fillers, glass fibers, elastomers and additives, formulated to customer specifications. Polypropylene compounds are used extensively in a wide range of automotive applications, including engine parts (air conditioning, air filters), interior components (door panels, consoles, dashboards, trim) and exterior components (bumpers, autobody parts).