Evonik Adds to Silanes Portfolio With Silbond Buy

06.03.2014 -

Germany's Evonik has acquired leading silicic acid esters producer Silbond, headquartered at Weston, Michigan in the U.S. 

The Marl-based speciality already produces functional silanes at its sites in Rheinfelden, Germany, Antwerp, Belgium, Rizhao, China and Mobile, Alabama, U.S.

The transaction that closed on Feb. 28 "opens the door to the attractive North American market," said Johannes Ohmer, head of the inorganic materials business unit in the resource efficiency segment. "We are now able to supply our customers from a local production capacity and monitor future growth in the silicic acid esters market."

A special group of functional silanes, silicic acid esters - including tetraethoxysilane, sold by Silbond under the Teos trademark - are used in a wide variety of applications in the electronics industry or in chemical applications such as coatings.

Silbond, which employs 60 people, supplies specialty products to end-markets experiencing above-average growth, Evonik said. Applications for the electronics industry as well as chemical applications, are seen as growing at 5-6% annually. Additional applications are in binders for foundry molds as well as in anti-corrosion paints, and the German group sees additional potential in markets such as insulation.

Patrik Wohlhauser, chief operating officer of Evonik, said the acquisition "further strengthens our leading position as a whole with regards to silanes and improves our position in relation to technology and profitability." He said the Silbon portfolio will "perfectly supplement" his company's product slate.

Evonik's annual capacity for silanes totals 300,000 t, supplying markets in automotive, construction, plastics and electronics industries. Its products are used in particular in adhesives, sealants, paints and coatings, architectural protection, optical fibers and semiconductors.