Mitsubishi Chemical acquires Michigan-based PVC compounding business Comtrex; acquisition will accelerate expansion of Mitsubishi's performance polymers business

TOKYO , April 23, 2013 (press release) – Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC; Head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Hiroaki Ishizuka), a subsidiary of Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation (MCHC; Head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Yoshimitsu Kobayashi) announced today that it has acquired all of the assets concerning the compounding business of Comtrex, LLC (Comtrex; Head office: Warren, Michigan, U.S.A.; CEO: Wyman Bolton).

This acquisition is in line with the MCHC Group medium-term management plan, APTSIS 15 (FY2011-2015). As one of the ‘growth businesses’ in the portfolio, the performance polymers business has been expanding its manufacturing and sales of thermoplastic elastomers, cross-linked polymers, adhesive polymers, and conductive polymers. The key markets include; automotive, medical, food, and building industries in Asia, North America, and Europe.

Comtrex has been engaged in the PVC compounding business for over 30 years. As the business continued to grow, customers began to request that Comtrex develop a line of vulcanized thermoplastic elastomers (TPV). Comtrex began developing TPV in 2000 and selling this product in 2002. This product line has seen strong growth in recent years.

MCC established Mitsubishi Chemical Performance Polymers, Inc. (MCPP; Head office: Greer, South Carolina; President: Mike Gragtmans) as a business platform in North America in 2005. Since that time, MCPP has been expanding the compounding business with a strategic focus on thermoplastic elastomers and adhesive resins for various applications and industries.

Furthermore, in December 2011, MCPP’s business platform in North America was strengthened further by acquiring all the shares of a previous joint venture for PVC compounds. In November 2012, MCPP acquired the assets of the Bellevue, OH Plant which was the primary manufacturing location for these compounds.

MCC’s acquisition of the Comtrex business will enable an acceleration of the global expansion of the performance polymers business through their global networks.

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