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Nexen Tire holds inauguration ceremony for Nexen Tire Japan Inc.  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Seoul, South Korea - Nexen Tire has held an inauguration ceremony for its subsidiary Nexen Tire Japan Inc., a joint venture with Toyota Tsusho Corporation. The ceremony took place in Tokyo, Japan with CEO of Nexen Tire, Travis Kang, and Ichiro Kashitani, Automotive Division chief officer of Toyota Tsusho Corp., and other relevant parties. The two companies' discussion about synergy-deriving cooperation began in June 2015, which progressed into signing of the shareholders' agreement to establish a joint venture, Nexen Tire Japan Inc. Toyota Tsusho Corporation, the trading arm of Japan's Toyota Group, mainly exports automobiles and automotive parts, but is also actively involved in a range of businesses including metals, chemicals and electronics. Established in 1948, Toyota Tsusho Corporation is one of the Top 5 Japanese trading companies, earning JPY 67 billion ($591 million) in fiscal year 2015 with six operating divisions and over 150 offices as well as 900 subsidiaries and affiliates worldwide. With Nexen Tire holding 51 percent and Toyota Tsusho holding the remaining 49 percent of the shares, Nexen Tire Japan Inc. begins its sales of Nexen Tire's products this month. With local management within the organization, Nexen Tire Japan will customize its business operation to strengthen its RE business in the market and also reinforce OE supply to Japanese automobile manufacturers carrying on diverse marketing activities. With the leverage of Toyota Tsusho's brand awareness and distribution network, Nexen Tire aims to expand its business hence bolster Nexen Tire's brand awareness and boost its sales within Japanese market. Nexen Tire has been providing its OE to global automobile manufacturers such as Porsche, Volkswagen, Renault and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and is actively carrying on various activities for its diverse marketing. It is closely communicating with customers through social media, such as Facebook, YouTube and blogs, providing a lot of interesting and useful information. Nexen Tire is also establishing worldwide brand awareness through diverse marketing activities including official partnerships with the United States drifting series Formula Drift and the English Premier League's Manchester City Football Club, as well as sponsorship of the Czech Republic's Premier Ice Hockey League's BK MladaBoleslav. - * Email

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Norma Group expanding its North American test and product development labs  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Auburn Hills, MI - Norma Group is investing nearly $1,000,000 to expand its North American test labs and product development facilities to meet a future need for lighter exhaust, power train and electric-vehicle components. Norma Group CEO Werner Deggim said the company is expanding its product development facilities in Auburn Hills and St. Clair, MI, as well as test labs in Monterrey, Mexico. He added that similar investments are being made at Norma Group locations in Qingdao and Changzhou, China; Hustopece, Czech Republic; Maintal, Germany; Pilica, Poland, and Subotica, Serbia. New plastic tubing and components for next-generation system designs are lighter and easier to assemble than current product solutions that rely on metal or rubber, according to Jonathan Heywood, director of product engineering for NORMA Group’s Engineered Joining Technology business unit in Maintal, Germany. “Tubes and connectors in a wide variety and combination of plastics provide an optimal solution for many customer needs for durable, recyclable light-weight parts,” Heywood explained. “For example, plastic components with low fluid permeability and the ability to withstand wide temperature variations are ideal for hydrogen lines and battery-cooling applications.” He added that tubing designed with multiple layers of different plastics offers customers an even broader range of characteristics and flexibility in both performance and price. Norma Group’s new product development facilities will evaluate the performance of fluid systems, such as cooling-system water pipes and urea systems, subjecting them to a broad range of temperatures from minus 40 up to 300 degrees Celsius; pressures of up to 20 bar, and different vibration frequencies. Simulation testing will take into account variations in temperature and pressure and will include chemical resistance to different media, such as glycol-water mixtures, oil, diesel, gasoline and urea. Deggim noted that plastic materials which can be reused or recycled are becoming more and more important and offer an opportunity to replace conventional materials such as rubber and metal, which often are heavier and more expensive. "By investing in our global network of laboratories, we will be able to meet an even wider range of customer test requirements," said Deggim. "Our goal is to take a leading position in the development of high-temperature resistant plastics as well. In labs around the world, we are developing and testing individual product solutions together with our customers on site." Norma Group has been expanding its test labs worldwide since 2015 to ensure the same high standards in quality assurance on a global basis. The reliable function of connection products is crucial, since they are considered to be function critical. If even one element leaks, the function of the entire vehicle can be affected. For this reason, Norma Group is committed to comprehensive in-house performance tests for all products, whether plastic or metal. In total, the company annually invests about five percent of its sales in the area of engineered joining technology (EJT) in research and development (2015: EUR 25.4 million). - * Email

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McLube

Kraton Corporation announces a general price increase for HSBC polymers  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Houston, TX - Kraton Corporation announces a general price increase of $450/metric ton for all Kraton HSBC polymers. Subject to the terms of any applicable contracts, these price increases will take effect February 1, 2017. - * Email

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Evonik to present Vestenamer for efficient tire production at Tire Technology Expo 2017  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Essen, Germany - At Tire Technology Expo 2017 in Hanover, Germany, Evonik will present Vestenamer, a process additive with unique properties for efficient tire production. The Vestenamer process additive simplifies the mixing and production of various tire compounds. It also improves dispersion of difficult polymer mixtures and reduces the viscosity of the compound while generally leaving the positive dynamic properties of the vulcanizate unaffected or increasing these even further in some cases. Advanced high-performance tires are required to have low rolling resistance and excellent wet traction combined with high abrasion resistance. This can be achieved only by using highly active fillers such as carbon black and especially precipitated silicas. Particularly when it comes to mixtures with high filler concentrations, multi-stage mixing processes is required in order to achieve a good dispersion. As a dispersion aid, Vestenamer can significantly shorten mixing cycles and at the same time optimize batch consistency in production. As a result the number of mixing steps in the process can be reduced and the process more efficiently designed. High hardness, outstanding abrasion resistance, and very low compression set are the important requirements on compounds for rim strips. Vestenamer improves the processability of the rubber compound by reducing the viscosity at the mixing temperature and so preventing "bagging" at the rolling mill. Thanks to its crystallinity and high recrystallization rate below the melting range, Vestenamer results in excellent dimensional stability in extrusion processes. By reducing internal friction, the addition of Vestenamer can significantly reduce the reversion of natural rubber. When mixing incompatible elastomers, due to differing polarities, Evonik's process additive can greatly improve compatibility. Vestenamer is a semicrystalline additive also called trans-octenamer rubber (TOR). As a polymeric processing aid it acts as a plasticizer in rubber compounds during mixing and processing. However, during vulcanization of the rubber component it is crosslinked along with the rubber and as an elastomer is fully integrated into the polymer network. Thus, the excellent properties of the mixture remain stable in the final application. Learn more about Vestenamer for efficient tire production at our booth, C816, at the Tire Technology Expo in Hanover between February 14 and 16. - * Email

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Hexpol to release year-end report February 3  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Malmo, Sweden - Hexpol will release the year-end report for 2016 on Friday, February 3, at 08:00 CET. The report will be presented by Hexpol’s president and CEO, Georg Brunstam, and CFO Karin Gunnarsson on February 3 at 10:00 CET. The presentation will be held at the office of Swedbank conference, Regeringsgatan 30-32, entrance A, floor 4, Stockholm, Sweden. Please register to ir@hexpol.com. The report will also be presented at a telephone conference on February 3 at 14:00 CET. Please call +46 (0)8-213 091 (international call/from mobile phone) or 020-213 091 (national call, Sweden) and enter meeting code 917 840 to participate in the conference. The year-end report and IR-presentation will be available on www.hexpol.com at 08:00 CET on February 3. - * Email

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