SGL and Samsung to Jointly Develop Carbon Fiber Composites
Germany's SGL Group and Korean electronics and petrochemicals group Samsung have founded a 50:50 joint venture to develop the market for carbon fiber composites. The partners say the new marketing company, Samsung SLG Carbon Composite Materials, will combine their core competencies. SGL will contribute its knowhow in carbon fiber-reinforced materials, Samsung its experience in application development.
The collaboration - closing of the deal is targeted for July, pending regulatory approvals, and operations are to begin shortly afterward - is expected to secure a long-term stable supply of materials for Samsung. Headquarters of the joint venture will be at Ulsan, South Korea, the marketing office at Seoul, South Korea. SGL products will be given preference in all transactions.
In the medium term, the companies plan to expand the business across Asia. Targeted applications, alongside electronics, are windmill turbine blades, pressure vessels, automotive and household appliances, seen as growing by 20% annually in Korea and China. Currently, Korean applications focus on prepregs and sporting goods.
SGL managing board member Jürgen Köhler said the joint venture "underlines our strategy to enter new markets and develop innovative applications for our high-performance materials." Yoosung Chung, CEO of Samsung Petrochemicals, commented that the partnership with the German group, which he said has "unique expertise" along the entire value chain from carbon fibers to CFRP components, will position his group as a leading player in these fields.