LAPLACE, La.—Denka Performance Elastomer L.L.C. will create a new corporate headquarters at its site in LaPlace.
The site, which was DuPont Co.'s former Neoprene-branded polychloroprene synthetic rubber business, is expected to create 16 corporate executive jobs, with an average annual salary estimated at $80,000 plus benefits, according to the Louisiana Economic Development.
The board also estimated the project will result in another 81 indirect jobs in the greater New Orleans area and Southeast region of Louisiana.
“With one of the nation's best business climates, Louisiana offers corporations very attractive business operating costs, and our state ranks No. 1 for the lowest tax burden applied to new and mature manufacturing projects and No. 4 for lowest tax burden on corporate headquarters,” Gov. Bobby Jindal said in a statement.
Denka Performance Elastomer is a newly formed joint venture in which Tokyo-based Denka Co. Ltd. owns 70 percent and Mitsui Co. Ltd., also based in Tokyo, owns the remaining 30 percent. The joint venture was established as a result of its acquisition of DuPont's Neoprene business, which according to the release by the state of Louisiana was just completed.
The release said DuPont will retain 235 existing manufacturing jobs associated with the Pontchartrain Works production site in LaPlace, where DuPont will continue to operate its separately owned Kevlar business.
Denka manufacturers and distributes chemical products encompassing chloroprene rubber, organic and inorganic materials, polymer processing, electronic materials and pharmaceuticals. According to its website, it operates 10 other manufacturing facilities—six in Japan, three in Singapore and one in China.
Mitsui, a Japanese general trading company, operates 142 offices in 66 countries.
Denka has one other polychloroprene plant, in Omni, Japan, which produces material using the acetylene method. Denka said the plant opened in 1962 and currently supplies 80 countries. In 2010, the firm increased its polychloroprene rubber production to 100,000 metric tons.
According to Denka, DuPont manufactures polychloroprene using the butadiene method and supplies North America, South America and Europe.
“Chloroprene rubber has been a core business for Denka Japan for many years, and I am sure this new addition in LaPlace will largely contribute to our future growth, enabling us to serve the market and customers better,” Koki Tabuchji, president and CEO of Denka Performance Elastomer, said in a statement.
Louisiana Economic Development said it began negotiations with Denka in February and offered a competitive incentive package that included its LED FastStart program, which according to LED is the No. 1 state work force development program in the nation. LED said Denka is expected to utilize the state's quality jobs program.