MILAN—Shanghai-based Versalis Pacific Trading, a 100 percent subsidiary of Versalis, has signed a styrene butadiene rubber sales agreement with Reliance Industries Ltd. to commercialize the rubber produced by Reliance at its new Indian plant.
According to a press release by the Italian chemical company, the agreement follows the licensing of Versalis' technology to Reliance in 2011 for its 140-kiloton-per-year emulsion styrene butadiene rubber production site in Hazira, India.
The plant, which is now up and running, is principally producing materials for the tire market.
Versalis said that part of the plant's production will be distributed by in China, “where the automotive and tire industries are developing rapidly and represent a massive potential for rubber producers.”
The Italian company said that it had adopted a “very active licensing strategy” to expand its industrial footprint in Asia in a bid to maintain its strong position in the elastomers market.
The company has established two subsidiaries in the region—Versalis Pacific Trading in Shanghai, China and Versalis Pacific India in Mumbai, India.
“Asia has also been the background for strategic and factual joint ventures—with Lotte Chemical in South Korea, with Petronas in Malaysia—while new negotiations with other major international market leaders are also being finalized,” said the statement.
“The agreement with Reliance enriches the growing portfolio of partners that have been valuing Versalis technical and commercial know-how for years now, enabling [us] to strengthen our competitive positioning in Asia,”Versalis CEO, Daniele Ferrari said.
Earlier in July, Versalis and two Mesnac companies—Ecombine and EVE Rubber Institute—announced the launch of a joint effort to develop a breakthrough generation of tires based on proprietary solution styrene butadiene rubber (S-SBR) and butadiene rubber (Nd-HCBR) technologies.
The partnership will integrate Versalis' elastomer technologies with EVE's ATCM—technology for compound manufacturing—which is focused on making advanced elastomer compounds for tires.