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BASF combines water and mining businesses

BASF has combined its businesses with water solutions and oilfield and mining solutions to increase efficiency and support its growth strategies. The new global business unit will be located in Ludwigshafen, Germany.

“By combining the strengths of these businesses, sharpening our focused market approach and at the same time increasing operational and innovation excellence, we are in a good position to advance innovative solutions to the water, oilfield and mining industries,” said Hans W. Reiners, President of BASF’s Performance Chemicals division.

BASF offers a wide range of products for key processes of industrial and municipal water treatment, products for the drilling and completion of oil wells and mineral processing reagents for the mining industry.

All three businesses include parts of the polyacrylamide (PAM) value chain. With the combination of these businesses BASF is taking various steps to increase efficiency and operational excellence in its PAM operations.

Significant investments are planned to upgrade the performance of existing production plants, create additional capacity, strengthen R&D efforts and establish a new bio-acrylamide process for further cost optimisation.

As part of its worldwide operational improvement program for its water solutions business, the company expects to reduce its workforce by about 215 positions worldwide.

Most of the planned job reductions will occur at the Bradford and Grimsby, UK sites.

“The planned comprehensive measures are needed to achieve cost competitiveness. These efforts will be backed by considerable investments in new technologies in Europe as well as in North America and in R&D,” said Reiners.

BASF expects to complete the planned measures at the latest by end of 2015.

Within the future setup, the PAM product line and the respective operations will be jointly managed for all three businesses following an integrated PAM strategy covering both, cationic and anionic PAM in order to generate additional value.

BASF’s water solutions business will in future fully concentrate on providing innovative chemical solutions to the water market.

To this end the company is planning to divest its service-oriented industrial water management business, located in Lyon, France, to a strategic partner capable to further expand the business and giving the current 61 employees a long-term perspective.

BASF's portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas.

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