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March 4, 2014

Evonik acquires Michigan-based silane producer Silbond

Mary Page Bailey

Evonik Industries AG (Essen, Germany; has acquired Silbond Corp. (Weston, Mich.), a supplier of silicic acid esters. As a special group of functional silanes, silicic acid esters are used in a wide variety of applications, such as in the electronics industry or in chemical applications like coatings. The most important silicic acid ester is Tetraethoxysilane (TEOS), which is manufactured by Silbond.

Evonik already produces functional silanes at its sites in Rheinfelden (Germany), Antwerp (Belgium), Rizhao (China) and Mobile, Ala. (U.S.). With the Weston site, the Group is now extending its production network with efficient technology for silicic acid esters, primarily for the attractive North American region.

With its TEOS specialty business, Silbond supplies end markets with above-average growth. These markets include the electronics industry as well as markets for chemical applications with an annual growth of 5 to 6 percent. In addition, TEOS is used as a binder for foundry molds and in anti-corrosion paints. There is further growth potential when connecting it to the current growth fields of the Resource Efficiency Segment, such as insulation. The company has about 60 employees.

The overall market for functional silanes, which includes silicic acid esters, is growing faster worldwide than the global gross domestic product. The growth is driven by the increasing demand for new applications such as high-performance insulation materials. Another growth driver is the increasing demand from emerging countries.

The silanes portfolio of Evonik comprises chlorosilanes as well as organofunctional silanes and will be perfectly supplemented by the Silbond business. The specialty chemicals company has an annual overall capacity for silanes of about 300,000 metric tons per year (m.t./yr), which are sold to the automobile, construction, plastics and electronics industries. The silanes are used in adhesives, sealants, paints and coatings, architectural protection, optical fibers and semiconductors, as well as in tires and rubber.

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