U.S. Chemical Industry outlook “gloomy” as Coronavirus Cases Cross 8.2 Lakh in the country

Whatech | April 23, 2020

As per the recent interim updates by the American Chemistry Council (ACC),  there is significant uncertainty in the projections of the U.S. chemical industry as it analyzes the potential impacts of Covid-19 which has caused indefinite halt in the country’s manufacturing activities and muted trading. ACC projects the world trade to plummet by 10.5% this year as the pandemic brings a “perfect storm” to the global economy with U.S. experiencing the hardest blow as it reports the spread of the virus in more than 8.2 lakh people, as on Wednesday, 22nd April 2020. It is being feared that if lockdown restrictions are not eased before the end of Q2 2020, it would result in a sudden and severe collapse in global economy sliding it into the steepest recession since the 1930s.

Spotlight

In this episode of TalkingSense we’re talking some sense with Craig Rosenberg, Chief Analyst and Co-founder of TOPO. We’ll go behind the scenes of the building of TOPO as well as get the CliffsNotes version of their recent ABM study.


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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

Univar Solutions Expands Houston Solution Center with Addition of Homecare and Industrial Cleaning Laboratory

Univar Solutions Inc. | February 03, 2022

Univar Solutions Inc. a global chemical and ingredient distributor and provider of value-added services, followed up on its commitment to lead technical innovation for the chemical and specialty ingredient industry with the addition of a full-service homecare and industrial cleaning laboratory to its flagship Solution Center in Houston, Texas. A hub for innovation, product testing and application development, this latest investment will further enable Univar Solutions to help its customers better respond to shifts in consumer demand, regulatory changes and ingredient trends with a particular focus on sustainable and natural solutions. A dedicated team of scientists, chemists and technical experts, backed by the latest equipment, analytics and advanced testing processes, will partner with customers and suppliers to help deliver next-generation homecare and industrial cleaning products for better performing and more environmentally friendly solutions. "The fast-growing and ever-evolving nature of the cleaning industry means companies need a valued partner with deep expertise and the latest technology who can help drive technical innovation to bring better sustainability and accelerate the time to market," explained Aaron Lee, global vice president of homecare and industrial cleaning. "We're excited to offer our customers and suppliers access to a truly world-class technical facility staffed by some of the cleaning industry's brightest minds, where together we can help create greener, more sustainable products and solutions for a better world." Across homes, industries and other institutions, the demand for effective, environmentally conscious and sustainable cleaning products is accelerating, particularly in response to the global pandemic and an increase in ingredient literacy. Operating at the intersection of science and technology, the scientists, chemists and technical experts across Univar Solutions' global network of Solution Centers work to help bring simpler, cleaner and more sustainable and effective products to market across the homecare and industrial cleaning, beauty and personal care, food ingredients, pharmaceutical ingredients and other markets. "With our finger on the pulse of ingredient trends, we're combining deep industry and technical knowledge with the latest technology, testing and processes to help brands more efficiently bring new and more environmentally friendly products to market, enter new industry segments, reformulate existing products and respond to consumer demand. The expansion of our flagship facility in Houston, Texas, is just one piece of a global network of solution centers that help support our diverse portfolio of global customers and suppliers." Dr. Andrew Mint, director of global Solution Centers for Univar Solutions Among other services, the laboratory will offer efficacy testing of cleaning products, as the homecare and industrial cleaning industry continues to adapt to the changing demands that have occurred as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and to help bring more sustainable options to the market. End product applications expected to be developed at the facility include industry staples such as detergents, cleaners and disinfectants. About Univar Solutions Univar Solutions is a leading global specialty chemical and ingredient distributor representing a premier portfolio from the world's leading producers. With the industry's largest private transportation fleet and technical sales force, unparalleled logistics know-how, deep market and regulatory knowledge, formulation and recipe development, and leading digital tools, the Company is well-positioned to offer tailored solutions and value-added services to a wide range of markets, industries, and applications. While fulfilling its purpose to help keep communities healthy, fed, clean and safe, Univar Solutions is committed to helping customers and suppliers innovate and focus on Growing Together.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

Braskem Releases its First Ever Lineup of Sustainable 3D Printing Filaments for Additive Manufacturing

Braskem | May 10, 2022

Braskem the largest polyolefins producer in the Americas, as well as a market leader and pioneer producer of biopolymers on an industrial scale, announces today the release of three new sustainable 3D printing filament product offerings for the additive manufacturing market. These first of their kind products include 3D printing filaments produced from bio-based ethylene vinyl acetate filament derived from raw sugarcane as well from recycled polyethylene and polypropylenenblended filaments with, or without, carbon fiber. These sustainable products will be displayed in conjunction with Braskem's upcoming presence at Rapid + TCT, North America's largest Additive Manufacturing conference, being held at Huntington Place, in Detroit, Michigan from May 17 to 19, 2022. The RAPID + TCT 2022 conference brings together over 100 industry leaders focused on delivering leading-edge solutions to the 3D printing and additive manufacturing industry. "Braskem has a longstanding history of innovating and producing more sustainable bio-based polymers, and today's launch announcement regarding green EVA and recycled polymer 3D printing filaments reaffirms our commitment to a more circular, carbon neutral future. We couldn't be more excited to present these newest additions to our 3D printing product portfolio at the RAPID + TCT 2022 conference as our clients seek more sustainability solutions for the future." Jason Vagnozzi, Braskem Global Commercial Director of Additive Manufacturing Bio-based EVA Filament – FL600EVA-BIO FL600EVA-BIO is a bio-based ethylene vinyl acetate filament, derived from raw sugar care, providing a more sustainable alternative to traditional flexible materials available on the market. This low carbon footprint formulation delivers a unique combination of sustainability, flexibility, ductility, light-weighting, and moisture resistance for direct drive printing 3D printing systems. FL600EVA-BIO expands the availability of sustainable materials for use in 3D printing applications such as consumer, packaging, and industrial markets. Recycled Polyolefin Filament – FL600R Braskem FL600R is a recycled filament designed for use in material extrusion-based Additive Manufacturing while maximizing sustainably sourced content. Primarily sourced from recycled bottle caps, FL600R is a recycled PE/PP blend containing over 90% sustainably sourced material, providing a more sustainable solution without sacrificing printability. This environmentally friendly filament provides the same low density as well as water, chemical, and impact resistance inherent to virgin polyethylene and polypropylene-based materials.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

LG Chem Develops Advanced Plastic Product to Prevent Thermal Runaway in EV Batteries

LG Chem | May 16, 2022

LG Chem announced that it has developed a new plastic product for battery application that is capable of preventing the spread of flame in batteries, delivering the longest fire-resistance performance in the world. LG Chem’s flame-retardant engineering plastic product is able to prevent the spread of flames, thanks to the company’s proprietary technology and manufacturing methods. The new advanced flame barrier product created by LG Chem is a highly functional engineering plastic product made from various composites including polyphenylene oxide and polyamide (PA) resin. “We are proud to present this new product, a significant milestone for us after more than 10 years of dedicated research to deliver innovation for our customers. LG Chem continues to lead the rapidly evolving e-Mobility market, and we will continue to lead innovations through consistent R&D and investments in manufacturing based on our world-class chemical compounding technology.” Steven Kim, Senior Vice President of Engineering Materials Division at LG Chem When used in battery components, the new product is resistant to flames for a longer period of time due to its superior properties. It also features excellent dimensional stability and maintains its shape under changing temperature conditions. During LG Chem’s testing, the product was able to prevent the spread of flames caused by thermal propagation for over ten minutes at 1,000°C, 10 times longer than general plastics. Thermal runaway is the leading cause of EV battery fires, where various stressors can cause heat to build up within a battery cell. When a battery cell exceeds its temperature threshold, fire can occur due to a short circuit triggered by factors such as overcharging and over-discharging. The resulting fire is difficult to extinguish as lithium reacts violently with water. Application of LG Chem’s new engineering plastic product to battery components would benefit drivers and passengers, giving them more time to evacuate a vehicle in case of a damaged and overheating battery. Commercial production of the new product is on target to begin in 2023 aligned with customers’ demands and schedules. The company is currently in the process of obtaining patents in Korea, the United States and selected European markets. About LG Chem LG Chem is a leading global chemical company with a diversified business portfolio in the key areas of petrochemicals, advanced materials, and life sciences. The company manufactures a wide range of products from high value-added petrochemicals to renewable plastics, specializing in cutting-edge electronic and battery materials, as well as drugs and vaccines to deliver differentiated solutions for its customers. LG Chem is committed to reaching carbon-neutral growth by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050 by managing the impacts of climate change and making positive contributions to society through renewable energy and responsible supply chains. Headquartered in Seoul, Korea, LG Chem has multiple operation sites worldwide and generated KRW 42.7 trillion in sales in 2021.

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CHEMICAL MANAGEMENT

CrossAmerica Partners LP Announces Issuance and Sale of Cumulative Preferred Membership Interests by its Subsidiary

CrossAmerica Partners | March 31, 2022

CrossAmerica Partners LP a leading wholesale fuels distributor, convenience store operator and owner and lessor of real estate used in the retail distribution of motor fuels, today reported the issuance and sale of $25 million of Cumulative Preferred Membership Interests in its indirect, wholly owned subsidiary, CAPL JKM Holdings LLC. The preferred interests were issued and sold to entities affiliated with Joseph V. Topper, Jr., who indirectly controls and is the Chairman of the board of directors of CrossAmerica GP LLC, the general partner of the Partnership, and to John B. Reilly, III, the Vice Chairman of the board of directors of CrossAmerica GP LLC. The Cumulative Preferred Membership Interests are entitled to a 9.0% cumulative preferred return and are exchangeable, subject to certain terms and conditions, for common units of CrossAmerica, at an exchange price of $23.74 per common unit. The net proceeds from the preferred interest issuance will be used to prepay a portion of the outstanding borrowings under the Term Loan Credit Facility of the Partnership's subsidiary, CAPL JKM Partners LLC. “Our preferred equity issuance is an additional component in the financing of our $263 million acquisition of assets from 7-Eleven completed earlier this year. At acquisition, the purchase was funded entirely through borrowings under our credit facilities and today’s equity transaction will be used to reduce those borrowings. The transaction also demonstrates the continued commitment to the Partnership of our Chairman, Joseph V. Topper Jr, and Vice Chairman, John B. Reilly, III, and our Board of Directors’ dedication to acting in the best interests of our common unitholders.” Charles Nifong, President and CEO of CrossAmerica The issuance and sale of the Cumulative Preferred Membership Interests were approved by the Board of Directors of CrossAmerica’s General Partner, following the approval by, and recommendation of, its independent Conflicts Committee. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is acting as legal counsel to CrossAmerica. CrossAmerica will be filing a Form 8-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission providing additional details of the preferred equity issuance. About CrossAmerica Partners LP CrossAmerica Partners LP is a leading wholesale distributor of motor fuels, convenience store operator and owner and lessee of real estate used in the retail distribution of motor fuels. Its general partner, CrossAmerica GP LLC, is indirectly owned and controlled by entities affiliated with Joseph V. Topper, Jr., the founder of CrossAmerica Partners and a member of the board of the general partner since 2012. Formed in 2012, CrossAmerica Partners LP is a distributor of branded and unbranded petroleum for motor vehicles in the United States and distributes fuel to approximately 1,750 locations and owns or leases approximately 1,150 sites. With a geographic footprint covering 34 states, the Partnership has well-established relationships with several major oil brands, including ExxonMobil, BP, Shell, Chevron, Sunoco, Valero, Gulf, Citgo, Marathon and Phillips 66. CrossAmerica Partners LP ranks as one of ExxonMobil’s largest distributors by fuel volume in the United States and in the top 10 for additional brands.

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Spotlight

In this episode of TalkingSense we’re talking some sense with Craig Rosenberg, Chief Analyst and Co-founder of TOPO. We’ll go behind the scenes of the building of TOPO as well as get the CliffsNotes version of their recent ABM study.

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