BASF Inaugurates Indian Innovation Campus
BASF has inaugurated its new Innovation Campus Asia Pacific in Mumbai, India its largest R&D investment in South Asia to date. The €50 million investment is said to “significantly expand” the German group’s existing R&D activities in India to include global and regional research on a wide range of specialty chemicals, including personal and home care, process development, organic synthesis and crop protection.
Martin Brudermüller, vice chairman of the managing board and the group’s chief technology officer, said BASF is expanding its research and development network in the region especially to focus on emerging markets in Asia, as it wants to drive innovation addressing customer and market needs at an early stage. He said Mumbai will be “another powerful regional innovation hub for BASF, with proximity to the dynamically growing Indian market.”
BASF has been carrying out R&D in India since in 2005, and expanded its capacities in 2014. The new 20,000 m2 innovation campus, which can accommodate up to 300 scientists from India and other parts of the world, houses state-of-the-art laboratories for chemical synthesis, application and process development as well as analytics, thereby bringing all of the group’s new and existing research activities in Mumbai under one roof. The campus also has modern offices, a full-scale auditorium, cafeteria and employee amenities.
The Mumbai building features a secondary exterior to minimize overheating from direct sunlight, energy efficient LED lights, rainwater harvesting, a reflective roof with photovoltaic panels and a windmill to generate renewable energy. More than 50% of the lighting is generated from renewable sources. BASF said the building is designed to meet the silver standards of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), the world’s most widely used third-party verification for green buildings.
Combined with a broad range of current development activities, the Ludwigshafen group said the Indian technology site will enable global know-how exchange and foster collaboration with customers, industrial and academic partners. “India is now home to a wide range of high caliber scientists and excellent domestic research capabilities,” noted managing board member Sanjeev Gandhi, who has responsibility for Asia-Pacific.
By its own account, BASF has invested €300 million in manufacturing and R&D in India over the past four year. Its local subsidiaries include BASF India Ltd., BASF Chemicals India Private Ltd. and BASF Catalysts India Private Ltd. Worldwide, the group spent €1.86 billion on R&D in 2016.