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Scrap silicone made into superhydrophobic materials

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Cambridge, England - The Royal Society of Chemistry reports, "Scientists in China have made a mechanically stable superhydrophobic material from waste silicone. There is currently no widespread recycling option for silicone products. "It is hard to reuse waste silicone owing to its crosslinked network. At present, the green method to reuse waste silicone is to collect discarded silicone products and smash them for further processing for low value applications, but this method is not widespread because of its relatively high cost and complicated processing," explained Lie Shen, who led the work at Zhejiang University. Shen’s team combusted and pulverized waste silicone domestic products, including cup covers, then hot-pressed them to produce a cheap and mechanically stable superhydrophobic material. Superhydrophobicity is a sought after property for anti-corrosion and self-cleaning materials. Silicone itself is hydrophobic; however, the change in morphology to hierarchical micro- and nanoscaled roughness created by the simple mechanical process traps air and thus establishes a surface solid–air–liquid interface causing superhydrophobicity, and a water contact angle matching that of the lotus leaf, which is held as the ideal superhydrophobic surface. Markus Antonietti, director of the Max Plank Institute of Colloids and Interfaces in Germany, says using silicone rubber leftovers in a pyrolysis technique is "highly valuable" and "not only makes the processing eco-neutral, but also provides an attractive economic base to bring such superhydrophobic coatings into areas where the current technology is simply too expensive." Materials scientist Yong-Lai Zhang of Jilin University in China, says the superhydrophobic powder is very interesting, especially from a sustainability viewpoint. "As a wipe-on water repellent, the silica-based superhydrophobic powder may hold promise for the development of robust and cheap dewetting coatings." - * Email

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RheinChemie

Titan International announces third quarter results

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Quincy, IL - Titan International, Inc. announced third quarter revenue and performance results. Third quarter highlights: Sales for the third quarter 2014 were $449.6 million, down 9.6 percent compared to $497.5 million in the third quarter of 2013. Gross profit for the third quarter of 2014 was $45.3 million, or 10.1 percent of net sales, compared to $62.5 million, or 12.6 percent of net sales for the third quarter of 2013. Loss from operations for the third quarter of 2014 was $(2.5) million, or (0.6) percent of net sales, compared to income of $17.1 million, or 3.4 percent of net sales, in 2013. Adjusted net income (loss) for the third quarter was $(9.1) million, compared to $8.1 million in the third quarter of last year. Adjusted basic earnings per share for the third quarter 2014 and 2013 were $(0.17) and $0.15, respectively, and adjusted fully diluted earnings per share were $(0.17) and $0.15, respectively. CEO and Chairman Maurice Taylor commented, "Third quarter revenue results were down 10 percent from 2013. The drop in demand for large agriculture equipment sales and larger products used in the mining industry had a significant impact on our business. In addition, as raw material prices continue to fall, price reductions were passed to customers. Steel and natural rubber are the largest raw material components in our business. Prices for these two commodities have been dropping steadily, with natural rubber reaching a five year low. The higher SG&A expenses were primarily the result of approximately $4 million of SG&A expenses at the recently acquired facility in Russia. As a result of the strength in the U.S. dollar, Titan incurred approximately a $13.3 million loss in foreign currency, included in other income (loss) in the third quarter primarily due to the translation of intercompany loans on certain foreign subsidiaries dominated in currencies other than their functional currencies. "As for our outlook on the markets ahead, we believe large agriculture equipment sales will be down at least through 2015 in North America. South America will remain relatively flat; however, we have expanded our product offering in Brazil to cover more large agriculture and medium size construction. Europe will remain stable as the challenges in this region remain. ITM's track business in Europe is maintaining and they have positive news from new aftermarket test results that we believe could increase their business in 2015. In Russia, we expect to reduce the employee count from 2,300 to 1,000 this year in line with current demand. We are updating molds and equipment into the Russia tire facility to improve performance and efficiency. This region will slowly improve in the quarters ahead. "We are taking steps to improve the business despite these challenging markets. We continue with our strategy to realign the Bryan, OH, facility to current market conditions and improve profitability in the earthmoving/construction segment. The union is in partnership with Titan to achieve this goal in the near future. We are on schedule with the reclamation project in Canada and look forward to launching operations in the latter part of 2015. We have received some new orders for Titan's 58x63 loader tires and wheels and we will have our new 45R/56.3 loader tires in the field by the first quarter. "Titan will continue to strengthen our path toward growth and improved performance as we enter into 2015 with cost reductions and new product offerings, including the LSW wheel/tire campaign." - * Email

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McLube

Applied Industrial Technologies elects Peter Wallace as chairman

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Cleveland, OH - The board of directors of Applied Industrial Technologies has elected Peter C. Wallace as its independent chairman. He succeeds John F. Meier, who has served as chairman since 2011 and who will continue to serve as a member of the board. Wallace, age 60, has served on the Applied board since 2005. He is chief executive officer of Gardner Denver, Inc., a privately owned global manufacturer of engineered compressors, pumps, blowers and fluid management solutions for critical applications in industrial, energy, medical, chemical and other demanding industries. He was elected CEO of Gardner Denver in June 2014 after having served on its board. Previously, he was president and chief executive officer, and a director, of Robbins & Myers, Inc., from 2004 until it was acquired in February 2013 by National Oilwell Varco, Inc. Robbins & Myers was an NYSE-listed leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of highly engineered equipment and systems for energy, chemical, pharmaceutical and industrial markets worldwide. Wallace also serves on the board of Rogers Corporation, a NYSE-listed company providing advanced materials technologies and design collaboration for a wide range of industries. Meier, 67, is the former chairman and chief executive officer of Libbey Inc., a leading supplier of glass tableware products, from which he retired in 2011. He has served on the Applied Board since 2005, and he also serves as a director of Cooper Tire & Rubber Company. "We thank John for his valued service as chairman and for fulfilling his agreed term, and we are grateful to know that the Board will continue to benefit from his wisdom and experience," said Applied's president and chief executive officer, Neil A. Schrimsher. "We are also pleased to have Pete succeed John. As a member of our board for nine years, Pete knows our company well. When considered together with his CEO and public company director experience, Pete is well qualified to lead our board." "I am honored to serve as chairman of the Applied board of directors," said Wallace. "I look forward to continuing to work with management to execute the long-range business strategy for profitable growth and increased shareholder value." - * Email

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Goodyear reports third quarter 2014 results

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Akron, OH - The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company reported record segment operating income for the third quarter of 2014. "We delivered outstanding earnings growth in the quarter and achieved a segment operating income margin of more than 11 percent, the highest in more than a decade, despite an increasingly challenged global economy," said Richard J. Kramer, chairman and chief executive officer. "These results reflect our focus on capturing the value of our branded products in the marketplace and continued progress generating cost savings through our operational excellence activities," he added. Goodyear's third quarter 2014 sales were $4.7 billion, compared to $5.0 billion a year ago. Sales were negatively impacted by $137 million in unfavorable foreign currency translation. Tire unit volumes totaled 41.9 million for the third quarter of 2014, down 2 percent year-over-year. Original equipment unit volume was down 3 percent, primarily due to reduced vehicle production in Brazil. Replacement tire shipments were down 1 percent, due primarily to a decline in North America where markets were disrupted due to significant stockpiling of imported low-end tires in advance of potential tariffs being imposed in 2015. "In the distorted North American industry environment, we remained committed to our strategy of pursuing profitable volume and we achieved record segment operating income in the quarter," said Kramer. The company reported segment operating income of $520 million in the third quarter of 2014, a record for any quarter. Segment operating income was up 21 percent from the year-ago quarter driven by significant improvement in North America; Europe, Middle East and Africa, and Asia Pacific. Goodyear's third quarter 2014 net income available to common shareholders was $161 million (58 cents per share). Excluding certain significant items, adjusted net income was $242 million (87 cents per share). For the third quarter of 2013, net income available to common shareholders was $166 million (62 cents per share). Excluding certain significant items, adjusted net income was $190 million (68 cents per share). Per share amounts are diluted. - * Email

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Kuhmo begins recruiting for new tire plant in Georgia

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Atlanta, GA - The Georgia Department of Labor will help Kumho Tire recruit employees in Gwinnett for engineering, administrative, and management positions at a new facility under construction in Macon 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the KAAGA Building, 5900 Brook Hollow Parkway, Norcross. Kumbo Tire is expanding its search outside Macon to the metro Atlanta area to ensure attracting the most qualified candidates for current positions: purchasing assistant manager, junior-level electrical and machinery engineers, strategic planning assistant manager, accounting and finance manager and general affairs assistant manager. - * Email

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Indian demand unlikely to help rubber prices

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Kochi, India - The Economic Times reports, "Although Indian natural rubber prices have moved up 4 percent during the month, mirroring the global trend, the industry is not certain whether the upturn will be sustained. The current rise in international markets is stoked by a series of announcements aimed at reducing the surplus stock of natural rubber in the world. Thailand, the largest producer of rubber in the world, has announced subsidies for rubber farmers and proposed to buy rubber from the market. This led to a rise in global prices that had fallen to Rs 97 per kg. The Bangkok price recently touched Rs 105.42 per kg. "All these steps are directed towards curtailing supply while there has been no increase in demand, particularly from China, the largest consumer. So it remains to be seen whether the uptrend will be sustained without a spurt in demand," said C.P. Krishnan, whole-time director of Geojit Comtrade. Futures prices on Tokyo Commodity Exchange showed a correction during the past week after a long period of fall. Indian rubber prices too have risen about 4 percent in the past one month to reach Rs 126 per kg. The recent declaration by the Kerala government to procure rubber at Rs 5 more than the market prices too may have helped boost the sentiment. Though it is the peak harvest season in India, tapping is still not in full swing. "Rains have hampered tapping in Kerala for the past three weeks. Moreover, at the current price level, growers are not very interested to carry on tapping," said Biju John, a leading rubber dealer. According to him, the futures in NMCE are also not showing a buoyant trend. "Rubber farmers will not be interested in selling unless the Kerala government purchases at Rs 150 per kg or until it rises to Rs 171 per kg. Growers need at least Rs 150 per kg to cover the cost of production," pointed out N. Radhakrishnan, former president of Cochin Rubber Merchants Association. Production in the past two months has plummeted by around 25 percent, and the imports have gone up substantially. By the end of September, imports reached over 2.25 lakh metric ton, around 1 lakh metric ton less than the quantity imported for the whole of past year. Imports are continuing at a steady pace in October too. "Imports contracted in the past few months are arriving now. Availability continues to be low in the domestic market," said a senior officer of a leading tire company. Demand for tires continues to be sluggish during the third quarter too." - * Email

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Cooper Tire's Ostrander to speak at the Gabelli symposium

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Findlay, OH - Cooper Tire & Rubber Company announced that Chris Ostrander, president, Americas Operations, is scheduled to speak at the Gabelli 38th Annual Automotive Aftermarket Symposium on November 3 at 7 p.m. EST. Interested parties can access the live webcast via the link on the Investor Relations section of the company’s website or at the following internet address: http://wsw.com/webcast/gabelli59/ctb. The webcast will be archived on the Investor Relations section of the Cooper website, and will be available within one hour of the presentation. - * Email

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