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    [title] => Evonik introduces VP Disp. WF 7620
    [short_title] => 
    [summary] => The newest rheology control dispersion in the portfolio of its Coating Additives Business Line. 
    [slug] => evonik-introduces-vp-disp-wf-7620
    [body] => Evonik Resource Efficiency introduced VP Disp. WF 7620, the newest rheology control dispersion in the portfolio of its Coating Additives Business Line.

The dispersion was developed especially for waterborne systems. Because viscosities are generally lower in waterborne systems, VP Disp. WF 7620 efficiently prevents the settlement of pigments and fillers in the liquid phase and the sagging during the spray application. Its main applications are high-performance waterborne coatings for the industrial and automotive industries. It is especially recommended to be used via spray applications.

The new dispersion has very high compatibility. As a result, the usage of defoamers can be minimized. Furthermore, VP Disp. WF 7620 has a wider range of uses as it doesn’t interfere with other ingredients of the formulation. It is suitable for pigmented and clear water-based formulations alike.

With the usage of VP Disp. WF 7620, customers can skip pearl milling and do not need any other high shear equipment to incorporate the additive into the formulation. The usage during the manufacturing process is quite simple: The dispersion only needs to be stirred in, thus immediately providing high rheological effectiveness without separate adjustment of pH value. As a result, a final addition (post-addition) to adjust the viscosity during paint production is also possible. Dispersions allow dust-free handling of AEROSIL fumed silica powder in liquid media. They are ready to use and easy to handle.

VP Disp. WF 7620 belongs to Evonik’s product line of waterborne dispersions based on hydrophobic, or water-repellent, AEROSIL fumed silica. The dispersion contains 20% of functional AEROSIL. [views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-11-12 08:30:00 [updated_at] => 2019-11-12 08:34:50 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 228513 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["317767","322012","319506","319169","326262","323704","319895","326265","326260","322911","319782","325729"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-11-12 08:29:57 [contentType] => ContentType Object ( [className] => ContentType [content] => Array ( ) [taxonomy] => Array ( ) [listURL] => [logoUrl] => https: [id] => 2487 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => content_types [tag] => breaking_news [short_tag] => breaking_news [class_name] => [display_view] => [list_view] => [slug] => breaking-news [box_view] => [ignore_flag] => 0 [image_id] => 0 [layout_id] => 0 [formattedTag] => Breaking News ) [viewURL] => /contents/view_breaking-news/2019-11-12/evonik-introduces-vp-disp-wf-7620/ [relatedArticles] => Array ( [0] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 317767 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 191658 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Expands Fumed Silica Capacity [short_title] => [summary] => New plant for fumed silica comes on stream in Antwerp. [slug] => evonik-expands-fumed-silica-capacity [body] => Evonik has started up on schedule its new plant complex in Antwerp for production of fumed silica. With this, the specialty chemicals company can now serve the high demand for fumed silicas marketed under the AEROSIL brand. Typical applications include paints and coatings, advanced adhesive systems, transparent silicones, and nonflammable high-performance insulation materials. Evonik has invested a sum in the upper double-digit million euro range in the new plant complex.

“We’re pursuing a clear growth strategy for our silica business. With the additional capacities, we’re ensuring supply for our customers over the long term,” said Harald Schwager, deputy chairman of Evonik’s executive board. As part of Smart Materials, silica belongs to one of Evonik’s four strategic growth engines with above-average market growth. The growth of the global market for fumed silicas is expected to exceed 4 percent annually, outpacing the global economy as a whole.

Along with the market for hydrophilic fumed silica, demand is also growing for specialty hydrophobic silicas. The existing plant in Antwerp has accordingly been upgraded such that hydrophilic fumed silica can be given hydrophobic properties by special post-treatment. Evonik therefore now produces hydrophobic AEROSIL® at a second European site in addition to Rheinfelden, thus servicing continued high demand.

[views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-07-08 11:02:00 [updated_at] => 2019-07-08 11:04:38 [last_updated_author] => 142069 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","313974","313509","305406","312028","310372","310314","313260","309588","309132","309359","309442","307141","309673"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-07-08 10:56:16 ) [1] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319169 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193077 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193077 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Venture Capital Invests in East Coast U.S. Fund to Access New Technologies [short_title] => [summary] => Fund investment enables access to regional disruptive technologies in Evonik growth engines. [slug] => evonik-venture-capital-invests-in-east-coast-us-fund-to-access-new-technologies [body] => Evonik is extending its corporate venture capital activities in the U.S. with an investment into Tech Council Ventures II. Evonik is investing a single-digit million U.S. dollar amount. Tech Council Ventures is a U.S.-focused early-stage investor. It finances young, innovative start-up companies and actively supports them with their extended network in the Mid-Atlantic region on the east coast of the U.S.

The fund is based in New Brunswick, New Jersey, near Evonik’s U.S. headquarters in Parsippany and will enable access to a local network of technology start-ups including academia and industry. The Mid-Atlantic States of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and New York represent the second-largest venture-capital market in the country. In the U.S., Evonik Venture Capital is represented by Lutz Stoeber and Eric Breese, who are responsible for Evonik’s venture capital activities in North America.

"Fund investments are an important part of Evonik’s venture capital activities,” said Bernhard Mohr, head of Evonik Venture Capital. “The partnership with Tech Council Ventures enables us to get in touch with a broad range of innovative start-ups that are located near our North American headquarters and will provide us with an excellent overview of new technologies in that region.”

“The investment underlines our commitment to the region,” added John Rolando, president of North America for Evonik. “We see ourselves as a collaborator to foster entrepreneurship and strengthen local ties.”

Tech Council Ventures II focuses on areas that have a close fit to Evonik’s growth engines, areas which the company has identified as promising fields for future growth and development. The fund invests in start-ups in the fields of materials, life sciences, healthcare, internet of things and energy.

Evonik Venture Capital plays a strategic role in Evonik’s goal to become a best-in-class specialty chemicals company, by helping secure access to disruptive technologies and innovative business models as well as supporting digital transformation. To this end, Evonik launched its second venture capital fund with a volume of €150 million at the beginning of 2019, more than doubling the amount under management to €250 million. [views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-07-29 10:30:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-05 09:02:50 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","319506","313974","313509","312028","310372","317767","317842","314287","310633","308989","315663","312377","317117","316991","310208","311684"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-07-29 10:23:45 ) [2] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319506 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => 2019-09-01 [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193353 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193353 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Closes Sale of Methacrylates Business [short_title] => [summary] => Consistent strategy execution to focus on specialty chemicals. [slug] => evonik-closes-sale-of-methacrylates-business [body] => Evonik closed the sale of its Methacrylates business. The official closing of the transaction took place on July 31, following the signing of the purchase agreement earlier this year. The relevant anti-trust authorities had already granted their unrestricted approval.

The Methacrylates business has 15 production sites and 3,900 employees worldwide. From 2016 to 2018, the business generated an average annual EBITDA of about €350 million and sales of about €1.8 billion per year.

The enterprise value of €3 billion is the equivalent of 8.5 times the EBITDA of the divested business. Deductions result mainly from the transfer of pension obligations in the amount of around €600 million to the buyer and from transactional taxes in the amount of approx. €200 million.

Furthermore, during the closing process of the transaction, one-time tax obligations for Evonik were determined in the amount of around €260 million, resulting from the carve-out of the Methacrylates business and payable in 2019.

At the same time, this will lead to higher depreciation and associated future tax relief of up to €20 million per year in the free cash flow for the upcoming 15 years. The tax effect will therefore be largely offset over the entire period.

Evonik plans to use the proceeds from the transaction to strengthen its balance sheet and for the targeted expansion of its specialty chemicals portfolio. [views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-08-02 11:06:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-27 14:26:56 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","313974","313509","312028","319169","310372","317767","319895","310314","313260","309588","309132","309359","309442","309673","319782"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-08-01 10:59:55 ) [3] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319782 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193655 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193656 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Introducing Coatings Industry's 1st Digital Lab Assistant [short_title] => [summary] => COATINO is expected to be available to the entire coatings industry in 2020. [slug] => evonik-introducing-coatings-industrys-1st-digital-lab-assistant [body] =>

Evonik is introducing the first digital lab assistant for the coatings industry – COATINO.

 

Head of the Coating Additives Business Line at Evonik Dr. Gaetano Blanda wants to turn voice-controlled digital assistants from simple helpers for daily life into chemistry experts and use them in a place where a comprehensive amount of specialized knowledge is needed and a technical language is spoken: the laboratory.

 

His team specializes in formulations for the coatings industry and the associated additives. To exactly meet the customers’ wishes for color, gloss, and durability, the experts have to create complex mixtures in the lab which they supplement with the right additives. Thousands of combinations are possible.

 

The idea for COATINO was born during a strategy meeting at Coating Additives.

 

“We talked about new ways in which business could develop,” says Dr. Oliver Kröhl, head of the Strategic Business Area Development at Coating Additives and the project’s manager. “Innovations are no longer just limited to finished products or processes. Instead, you need to demonstrate your ability to come up with solutions in the form of new services and business models.”

 

The researchers focused on everyday challenges for the formulation of coatings and paints and soon decided that they could use a voice-controlled digital formulation assistant.

 

The scientists coated an empty can of paint in the company’s colors. They then put it into the laboratory, where they filmed a discussion between a colleague and the can. In the video, the user asked the can about a suitable waterborne anti-foaming agent for a wood coating. The can gave its reply, provided the lab employee with a selection of products, and ordered a sample.

 

“Back then, the questions were answered by a colleague who stood behind a wall,” Kröhl said. “Although this was rather ad hoc, we wanted to tangibly test our idea with customers and quickly get feedback.”

 

The video was shared with several customers and the team also conducted structured interviews.

 

“We’re experts for paints and coatings, but not for voice-controlled assistants,” Kröhl said. “That’s why we knew that the project might not work. However, we and our customers thought it had such great potential that we were willing to take the risk.” The aim was to develop a prototype assistant in time for the European Coating Show.

 

This was no easy task because conventional voice-recognition systems were unable to handle the specialist vocabulary.

 

“The usual assistants simply can’t understand our language,” Kröhl said. "They quickly reach their limits when you ask them about dispersion, rheology or silicone resins, for example, and they can, at best, only supply general information."

 

The high-throughput experimentation unit for the testing of coating recipes at the Coating Additives Business Line provides an important pool of data for the coating industry’s digital assistant. This unit, which is housed at Evonik’s Goldschmidtstrasse location in Essen, doses raw materials, formulates them to create coatings and characterizes the finished coatings. All of this runs fully automatically according to a precisely defined program that can be reproduced at any time.

 

As a result, the unit can formulate an average of 120 samples in 24 hours. The results can be called up and reproduced at any time. If this data is linked with COATINO, customers will receive daily updated data about individual coating formulations.

 

“They have to be able to do a lot more in order to formulate a coating,” Kröhl said. “If they don’t know the components’ properties and how they interact, they won’t be any help in the laboratory.”

 

Paints, lacquers, and other coatings basically consist of four components: solvents, binders, pigments, and additives. A solvent keeps a wall paint in a liquid state, for example. The solvent evaporates after the paint is applied, causing it to dry. Pigments give the paint the desired color. Binders are used to ensure the paint remains attached to the wall and is effective. This component is colorless and bonds the paint with the substrate. Additives make up the smallest percentage of a formulation. Although their share is less than five percent, they nevertheless play a key role. Additives eliminate foam when paint is applied. They also prevent the paint’s pigments from agglutinating. They make coatings thixotropic, i. e. they make them easy to apply, but prevent them from forming runs when they dry on vertical surfaces. Other additives make coatings more scratch-resistant, for example.

 

The various components influence each other’s effects, depending on the mixture. The number of possible combinations is immense. Even if only 10 curing agents, 10 binders, 10 pigments, and 10 additives are considered during the development of a coating recipe, these numbers translate into 10,000 possible combinations. And this doesn’t even take into account variations in the ratios of the components used.

 

“Customers have very precise ideas about the capabilities that a product should have once it’s finished,” Blanda said.

 

To develop a functional voice-controlled assistant for the coatings industry, the researchers at first began to structure all of the available information and feed it into a huge database. In the next step, they made it possible to call up this information using a voice-control function.

 

COATINO had to learn that “additive” designates a certain category of coating components. In the next step, the assistant has to access its data, search through it, create suitable links, and assign the data to a possibly relevant result. To do so, it first breaks down the sequence of sounds into their smallest components and conducts a data search based on characteristic properties. A special challenge for the assistant is that COATINO has to be able to understand not only German nouns in the nominative case but also in other cases. The researchers also want to make sure that the speaker’s dialect or accent won’t hamper the result. The ultimate aim is to enable COATINO to understand customers’ pronunciations worldwide.

 

Added to these challenges are the speakers’ different talking speeds and pitches as well as the specific context of a discussion.

 

“The training process is very nerve-wracking,” Kröhl said. “And after the trial run with our colleague in Shanghai was finally successful, it went wrong with our colleagues in Essen.”

 

For almost two years now, COATINO has been jointly developed and trained by the business line and an external development company

from Berlin. The assistant passed its first important development test when the prototype was demonstrated at the ECS.

 

When asked about suitable additives, it not only presents a list of products but also prioritizes them.

 

COATINO can tell me which additive would be best suited for my formulation and my requirements. It can thus give me well-founded recommendations,” Blanda said.

 

Once a user has found the desired product, he or she can issue a voice command to tell COATINO to order a sample, directly call up the pertinent technical datasheet by e-mail or have a conversation with an expert arranged.

 

The COATINO prototype was ready just in time for the start of the European Coating Show.

 

“We immediately presented it to a select group of our customers,” said Blanda.

 

Instead of a can, the users imparted their wishes to a tablet via a microphone.

 

“The feedback was even better than we’d hoped. We were able to gain some of the customers as first users who will test the assistant," Blanda said. “We wanted to get the customers involved at an early stage. Such a project can only work if customers also think it benefits them.”

 

In 2020 the researchers plan to make COATINO available to the entire coatings industry.

 

“When you use digital assistants, you continually come up with ideas for new features,” said Kröhl.

 

For example, COATINO could conceivably not only supply existing formulations but also suggest its own new mixtures. The scientists could directly test these mixtures in the lab and enhance them for their own use.

 

“Our COATINO might one day become an artificially intelligent entity,” said Blanda. “But we still have a long, long way to go until then.”

 


 
[views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-08-06 09:03:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-06 11:31:53 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 228513 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["310314","317767","319506","313260","309588","309132","309359","309442","309673","309804","316629","313699","309286","316175","310713","313620","317122","312276","242440"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-08-06 08:56:54 ) [4] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319895 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193703 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193703 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => FTC Lawsuit Delays Evonik's PeroxyChem Acquisition [short_title] => [summary] => Evonik acquisition of PeroxyChem delayed by FTC lawsuit [slug] => ftc-lawsuit-delays-evoniks-peroxychem-acquisition [body] =>
Evonik said it will vigorously defend itself against the action of the Federal Trade Commission, which announced it will file a lawsuit seeking to block Evonik’s proposed acquisition of PeroxyChem, a manufacturer of specialty peroxygen chemistries.
 
“It is disappointing that the FTC has taken this step to block the acquisition in the highly competitive hydrogen peroxide industry,” said Christian Kullmann, chairman of the executive board of Evonik. 
 
“PeroxyChem offers products in attractive and high-growth end markets that are complementary to Evonik’s product portfolio," Kullmann continued. "The transaction represents an opportunity for Evonik to expand further into specialty hydrogen peroxide and peracetic acid product, optimize its distribution network, achieve substantial efficiencies, and grow production and sales. We remain optimistic that we will prevail at trial and complete the acquisition.”
 
At the end of 2018, Evonik signed an agreement with One Equity Partners to acquire PeroxyChem for $625 million. Evonik was expecting to close the deal by the middle of 2019. However, the FTC lawsuit means that closing will not occur before the end of 2019.
 
“We continue to believe that the complementary fit of the two businesses will unlock new and attractive growth opportunities for our customers and employees,” said Bruce Lerner, president and CEO of PeroxyChem.
 
Both companies said they will vigorously defend the transaction against the FTC’s lawsuit and intend to show the court that the FTC’s claims fail to recognize current market dynamics, in particular, the substantial growth of specialty hydrogen peroxide applications that are PeroxyChem’s focus, and the significant synergies and customer benefits that will arise as a result of transaction.
[views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-08-07 05:00:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-07 09:30:16 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 228513 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","319506","313974","313509","312028","319169","310372","317767","309132","310314","313260","309588","309359","309442","309673","319782"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-08-07 09:18:48 ) ) [relatedContent] => Array ( [0] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 317767 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 191658 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Expands Fumed Silica Capacity [short_title] => [summary] => New plant for fumed silica comes on stream in Antwerp. [slug] => evonik-expands-fumed-silica-capacity [body] => Evonik has started up on schedule its new plant complex in Antwerp for production of fumed silica. With this, the specialty chemicals company can now serve the high demand for fumed silicas marketed under the AEROSIL brand. Typical applications include paints and coatings, advanced adhesive systems, transparent silicones, and nonflammable high-performance insulation materials. Evonik has invested a sum in the upper double-digit million euro range in the new plant complex.

“We’re pursuing a clear growth strategy for our silica business. With the additional capacities, we’re ensuring supply for our customers over the long term,” said Harald Schwager, deputy chairman of Evonik’s executive board. As part of Smart Materials, silica belongs to one of Evonik’s four strategic growth engines with above-average market growth. The growth of the global market for fumed silicas is expected to exceed 4 percent annually, outpacing the global economy as a whole.

Along with the market for hydrophilic fumed silica, demand is also growing for specialty hydrophobic silicas. The existing plant in Antwerp has accordingly been upgraded such that hydrophilic fumed silica can be given hydrophobic properties by special post-treatment. Evonik therefore now produces hydrophobic AEROSIL® at a second European site in addition to Rheinfelden, thus servicing continued high demand.

[views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-07-08 11:02:00 [updated_at] => 2019-07-08 11:04:38 [last_updated_author] => 142069 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","313974","313509","305406","312028","310372","310314","313260","309588","309132","309359","309442","307141","309673"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-07-08 10:56:16 ) [1] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319169 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193077 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193077 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Venture Capital Invests in East Coast U.S. Fund to Access New Technologies [short_title] => [summary] => Fund investment enables access to regional disruptive technologies in Evonik growth engines. [slug] => evonik-venture-capital-invests-in-east-coast-us-fund-to-access-new-technologies [body] => Evonik is extending its corporate venture capital activities in the U.S. with an investment into Tech Council Ventures II. Evonik is investing a single-digit million U.S. dollar amount. Tech Council Ventures is a U.S.-focused early-stage investor. It finances young, innovative start-up companies and actively supports them with their extended network in the Mid-Atlantic region on the east coast of the U.S.

The fund is based in New Brunswick, New Jersey, near Evonik’s U.S. headquarters in Parsippany and will enable access to a local network of technology start-ups including academia and industry. The Mid-Atlantic States of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia and New York represent the second-largest venture-capital market in the country. In the U.S., Evonik Venture Capital is represented by Lutz Stoeber and Eric Breese, who are responsible for Evonik’s venture capital activities in North America.

"Fund investments are an important part of Evonik’s venture capital activities,” said Bernhard Mohr, head of Evonik Venture Capital. “The partnership with Tech Council Ventures enables us to get in touch with a broad range of innovative start-ups that are located near our North American headquarters and will provide us with an excellent overview of new technologies in that region.”

“The investment underlines our commitment to the region,” added John Rolando, president of North America for Evonik. “We see ourselves as a collaborator to foster entrepreneurship and strengthen local ties.”

Tech Council Ventures II focuses on areas that have a close fit to Evonik’s growth engines, areas which the company has identified as promising fields for future growth and development. The fund invests in start-ups in the fields of materials, life sciences, healthcare, internet of things and energy.

Evonik Venture Capital plays a strategic role in Evonik’s goal to become a best-in-class specialty chemicals company, by helping secure access to disruptive technologies and innovative business models as well as supporting digital transformation. To this end, Evonik launched its second venture capital fund with a volume of €150 million at the beginning of 2019, more than doubling the amount under management to €250 million. [views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-07-29 10:30:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-05 09:02:50 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","319506","313974","313509","312028","310372","317767","317842","314287","310633","308989","315663","312377","317117","316991","310208","311684"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-07-29 10:23:45 ) [2] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319506 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => 2019-09-01 [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193353 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193353 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Closes Sale of Methacrylates Business [short_title] => [summary] => Consistent strategy execution to focus on specialty chemicals. [slug] => evonik-closes-sale-of-methacrylates-business [body] => Evonik closed the sale of its Methacrylates business. The official closing of the transaction took place on July 31, following the signing of the purchase agreement earlier this year. The relevant anti-trust authorities had already granted their unrestricted approval.

The Methacrylates business has 15 production sites and 3,900 employees worldwide. From 2016 to 2018, the business generated an average annual EBITDA of about €350 million and sales of about €1.8 billion per year.

The enterprise value of €3 billion is the equivalent of 8.5 times the EBITDA of the divested business. Deductions result mainly from the transfer of pension obligations in the amount of around €600 million to the buyer and from transactional taxes in the amount of approx. €200 million.

Furthermore, during the closing process of the transaction, one-time tax obligations for Evonik were determined in the amount of around €260 million, resulting from the carve-out of the Methacrylates business and payable in 2019.

At the same time, this will lead to higher depreciation and associated future tax relief of up to €20 million per year in the free cash flow for the upcoming 15 years. The tax effect will therefore be largely offset over the entire period.

Evonik plans to use the proceeds from the transaction to strengthen its balance sheet and for the targeted expansion of its specialty chemicals portfolio. [views] => 0 [published] => 1 [status] => 3 [priority] => 0 [publish_date] => 2019-08-02 11:06:00 [updated_at] => 2019-08-27 14:26:56 [last_updated_author] => 228513 [uploaded_by] => 142069 [user_role_id] => 0 [custom_fields] => [] [custom_fields_old] => [splitcontent] => 1 [content_url] => [related_content_ids] => ["309440","313974","313509","312028","319169","310372","317767","319895","310314","313260","309588","309132","309359","309442","309673","319782"] [is_show_company_name] => [created_at] => 2019-08-01 10:59:55 ) [3] => Content Object ( [className] => Content [contentLinks] => Array ( ) [belongsTo] => [contentIssue] => [id] => 319782 [pageNumber] => [offset] => [totalPages] => [last_query] => [last_sql] => [show_errors] => 1 [databaseServer] => Array ( [key] => master [host] => 172.24.16.232 [user] => rodpub_beta [pass] => MvQQzhse92k58yA [db] => rodpub_beta ) [tableName] => contents [content_type_id] => 2487 [resource_id] => 0 [author_id] => 0 [primary_issue_slug] => [author_name] => {"name":"","title":""} [magazine_id] => 5 [layout_id] => 0 [primary_image] => 193655 [primary_image_old] => [slider_image_id] => 193656 [banner_image] => 0 [title] => Evonik Introducing Coatings Industry's 1st Digital Lab Assistant [short_title] => [summary] => COATINO is expected to be available to the entire coatings industry in 2020. [slug] => evonik-introducing-coatings-industrys-1st-digital-lab-assistant [body] =>

Evonik is introducing the first digital lab assistant for the coatings industry – COATINO.

 

Head of the Coating Additives Business Line at Evonik Dr. Gaetano Blanda wants to turn voice-controlled digital assistants from simple helpers for daily life into chemistry experts and use them in a place where a comprehensive amount of specialized knowledge is needed and a technical language is spoken: the laboratory.

 

His team specializes in formulations for the coatings industry and the associated additives. To exactly meet the customers’ wishes for color, gloss, and durability, the experts have to create complex mixtures in the lab which they supplement with the right additives. Thousands of combinations are possible.

 

The idea for COATINO was born during a strategy meeting at Coating Additives.

 

“We talked about new ways in which business could develop,” says Dr. Oliver Kröhl, head of the Strategic Business Area Development at Coating Additives and the project’s manager. “Innovations are no longer just limited to finished products or processes. Instead, you need to demonstrate your ability to come up with solutions in the form of new services and business models.”

 

The researchers focused on everyday challenges for the formulation of coatings and paints and soon decided that they could use a voice-controlled digital formulation assistant.

 

The scientists coated an empty can of paint in the company’s colors. They then put it into the laboratory, where they filmed a discussion between a colleague and the can. In the video, the user asked the can about a suitable waterborne anti-foaming agent for a wood coating. The can gave its reply, provided the lab employee with a selection of products, and ordered a sample.

 

“Back then, the questions were answered by a colleague who stood behind a wall,” Kröhl said. “Although this was rather ad hoc, we wanted to tangibly test our idea with customers and quickly get feedback.”

 

The video was shared with several customers and the team also conducted structured interviews.

 

“We’re experts for paints and coatings, but not for voice-controlled assistants,” Kröhl said. “That’s why we knew that the project might not work. However, we and our customers thought it had such great potential that we were willing to take the risk.” The aim was to develop a prototype assistant in time for the European Coating Show.

 

This was no easy task because conventional voice-recognition systems were unable to handle the specialist vocabulary.

 

“The usual assistants simply can’t understand our language,” Kröhl said. "They quickly reach their limits when you ask them about dispersion, rheology or silicone resins, for example, and they can, at best, only supply general information."

 

The high-throughput experimentation unit for the testing of coating recipes at the Coating Additives Business Line provides an important pool of data for the coating industry’s digital assistant. This unit, which is housed at Evonik’s Goldschmidtstrasse location in Essen, doses raw materials, formulates them to create coatings and characterizes the finished coatings. All of this runs fully automatically according to a precisely defined program that can be reproduced at any time.

 

As a result, the unit can formulate an average of 120 samples in 24 hours. The results can be called up and reproduced at any time. If this data is linked with COATINO, customers will receive daily updated data about individual coating formulations.

 

“They have to be able to do a lot more in order to formulate a coating,” Kröhl said. “If they don’t know the components’ properties and how they interact, they won’t be any help in the laboratory.”

 

Paints, lacquers, and other coatings basically consist of four components: solvents, binders, pigments, and additives. A solvent keeps a wall paint in a liquid state, for example. The solvent evaporates after the paint is applied, causing it to dry. Pigments give the paint the desired color. Binders are used to ensure the paint remains attached to the wall and is effective. This component is colorless and bonds the paint with the substrate. Additives make up the smallest percentage of a formulation. Although their share is less than five percent, they nevertheless play a key role. Additives eliminate foam when paint is applied. They also prevent the paint’s pigments from agglutinating. They make coatings thixotropic, i. e. they make them easy to apply, but prevent them from forming runs when they dry on vertical surfaces. Other additives make coatings more scratch-resistant, for example.

 

The various components influence each other’s effects, depending on the mixture. The number of possible combinations is immense. Even if only 10 curing agents, 10 binders, 10 pigments, and 10 additives are considered during the development of a coating recipe, these numbers translate into 10,000 possible combinations. And this doesn’t even take into account variations in the ratios of the components used.

 

“Customers have very precise ideas about the capabilities that a product should have once it’s finished,” Blanda said.

 

To develop a functional voice-controlled assistant for the coatings industry, the researchers at first began to structure all of the available information and feed it into a huge database. In the next step, they made it possible to call up this information using a voice-control function.

 

COATINO had to learn that “additive” designates a certain category of coating components. In the next step, the assistant has to access its data, search through it, create suitable links, and assign the data to a possibly relevant result. To do so, it first breaks down the sequence of sounds into their smallest components and conducts a data search based on characteristic properties. A special challenge for the assistant is that COATINO has to be able to understand not only German nouns in the nominative case but also in other cases. The researchers also want to make sure that the speaker’s dialect or accent won’t hamper the result. The ultimate aim is to enable COATINO to understand customers’ pronunciations worldwide.

 

Added to these challenges are the speakers’ different talking speeds and pitches as well as the specific context of a discussion.

 

“The training process is very nerve-wracking,” Kröhl said. “And after the trial run with our colleague in Shanghai was finally successful, it went wrong with our colleagues in Essen.”

 

For almost two years now, COATINO has been jointly developed and trained by the business line and an external development company

from Berlin. The assistant passed its first important development test when the prototype was demonstrated at the ECS.

 

When asked about suitable additives, it not only presents a list of products but also prioritizes them.

 

COATINO can tell me which additive would be best suited for my formulation and my requirements. It can thus give me well-founded recommendations,” Blanda said.

 

Once a user has found the desired product, he or she can issue a voice command to tell COATINO to order a sample, directly call up the pertinent technical datasheet by e-mail or have a conversation with an expert arranged.

 

The COATINO prototype was ready just in time for the start of the European Coating Show.

 

“We immediately presented it to a select group of our customers,” said Blanda.

 

Instead of a can, the users imparted their wishes to a tablet via a microphone.

 

“The feedback was even better than we’d hoped. We were able to gain some of the customers as first users who will test the assistant," Blanda said. “We wanted to get the customers involved at an early stage. Such a project can only work if customers also think it benefits them.”

 

In 2020 the researchers plan to make COATINO available to the entire coatings industry.

 

“When you use digital assistants, you continually come up with ideas for new features,” said Kröhl.

 

For example, COATINO could conceivably not only supply existing formulations but also suggest its own new mixtures. The scientists could directly test these mixtures in the lab and enhance them for their own use.

 

“Our COATINO might one day become an artificially intelligent entity,” said Blanda. “But we still have a long, long way to go until then.”

 


 
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Evonik said it will vigorously defend itself against the action of the Federal Trade Commission, which announced it will file a lawsuit seeking to block Evonik’s proposed acquisition of PeroxyChem, a manufacturer of specialty peroxygen chemistries.
 
“It is disappointing that the FTC has taken this step to block the acquisition in the highly competitive hydrogen peroxide industry,” said Christian Kullmann, chairman of the executive board of Evonik. 
 
“PeroxyChem offers products in attractive and high-growth end markets that are complementary to Evonik’s product portfolio," Kullmann continued. "The transaction represents an opportunity for Evonik to expand further into specialty hydrogen peroxide and peracetic acid product, optimize its distribution network, achieve substantial efficiencies, and grow production and sales. We remain optimistic that we will prevail at trial and complete the acquisition.”
 
At the end of 2018, Evonik signed an agreement with One Equity Partners to acquire PeroxyChem for $625 million. Evonik was expecting to close the deal by the middle of 2019. However, the FTC lawsuit means that closing will not occur before the end of 2019.
 
“We continue to believe that the complementary fit of the two businesses will unlock new and attractive growth opportunities for our customers and employees,” said Bruce Lerner, president and CEO of PeroxyChem.
 
Both companies said they will vigorously defend the transaction against the FTC’s lawsuit and intend to show the court that the FTC’s claims fail to recognize current market dynamics, in particular, the substantial growth of specialty hydrogen peroxide applications that are PeroxyChem’s focus, and the significant synergies and customer benefits that will arise as a result of transaction.
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