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Momentive to sell sealants business to Henkel; expand focus on specialty silicones

By Mary Page Bailey |

Momentive Performance Materials Inc. (Waterford, N.Y.) outlined a series of steps to accelerate its global transition from commodity basics chemicals to specialty silicones – actions that will focus the company’s strengths and expertise on advanced technologies.

The steps include a $15-million investment in specialized Electronic Materials Production and the sale of its Consumer Sealants Business. The company also envisions a two-year transition away from basics chemicals production at its Waterford facility, which began operations in 1947.

“I’m excited about Momentive’s future, enabled by innovation that will provide creative solutions to our customers,” said President and CEO Sam Conzone, Ph.D. “We are continuing to prioritize and invest in specialty businesses where we have unique capabilities to win. Everything we do is focused on creating a stronger, more sustainable future for our employees, our customers and our communities.”

Momentive will invest $15 million in Advanced Electronic Materials Production at the Waterford site to serve rapidly growing high-tech applications. This investment in new capabilities and production will be operational starting in mid-2021 and is part of a $40 million global investment to drive Electronic Materials growth in areas including advanced aerospace, 5G telecommunications, automotive electronics and advanced display applications.

“This investment is a major step in advancing the uniqueness of Momentive’s value, technologies and applications for customers around the world,” said Sandip Tyagi, President and General Manager of Formulated Specialties. “Moreover, investing in Waterford focuses our talent and expertise, and solidifies its future as a global center for innovation. We are very excited about the opportunities ahead.”

Over the past five years, Momentive has invested approximately $100 million in growth, technology, productivity, safety and reliability at the Waterford site.

Momentive also announced the sale of its Consumer Sealants Business to Henkel, encompassing GE-branded consumer sealants sold under license from General Electric Company and available through home-improvement centers, major retailers and hardware stores. Momentive will continue to manufacture consumer-line products through 2021 under a transition supply agreement. The move away from consumer sealants will enable greater focus on unique silicones and specialty applications where Momentive has a strong ability to win. This transaction excludes the GE-branded construction sealants product line, which will remain a Momentive focus.

“Millions of homeowners and commercial builders have relied on GE-branded consumer sealants for decades, and we remain very proud of that legacy,” Conzone said. “Selling this business to Henkel allows Momentive to fully focus our attention and resources on innovating and growing with advanced products that enable our customers’ success.”

The anticipated sale remains subject to customary closing conditions including regulatory clearances.

Momentive also outlined a two-year vision to phase out basics chemicals production at its Waterford, New York site. The move would position the facility as a sustainable, global center specializing in advanced silicone technologies. These envisioned changes will be discussed with IUE-CWA union leadership and would not begin until 2021, continuing into 2022.

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