By Patrick Raleigh ERJ On-line news editor
Mansfield, Texas-Solvay Engineered Polymers, part of Solvay SA, has acquired Thermoplastic Rubber Systems Inc. (TRS), a Shirley, Massachusetts-based supplier of thermoplastic elastomer compounds. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The Mansfield-headquartered company has held an option to buy TRS since June 2002, when it acquired rights to market TRS' Nexprene-branded products to the automotive industry in Europe and North America.
TRS' Shirley facility houses three twin-screw compounding lines, with a combined annual capacity of up to 18 million pounds (around 8000 tonnes). TRS president Jonas Angus is to become general manager of SEP's TPV business unit, said a 5 Feb Solvay announcement.
SEP has manufacturing and R&D facilities in Mansfield and Grand Prairie, Texas, backed by sales & marketing operations and an Automotive Applications Development Center in Auburn Hills, Michigan.
The acquisition of TRS is part of SEP's strategy to enhance its presence in niche areas of the 100-ktpa global TPV market, and to offer a broader range of automotive solutions. The Solvay firm is already a leading supplier of TPOs (thermoplastic polyolefins) to the automotive sector.
SEP supplies a peroxide-cured TPV under the Respond brand name, which is typically targeted at automotive interior applications, whereas phenolic-cured Nexprene is targeted mainly at weatherseal applications.
â€œThis acquisition will enable us to realise all the operational synergies between the two operations that exist at every level, and to consolidate more efficiently our complementary TPO and TPV product lines,â€ said Pierre Joris, president of Solvay Engineered Polymers, in a press statement.
â€œWhile our customers can rely on their current products to be unchanged, they can anticipate that greater benefits will come from increased product engineering activity, and from the additional materials that we will be able to offer,â€ added Angus.