By Liz White, UT staffLudwigshafen, Germany-Having bought Degussa's construction chemicals mid 2006, BASF Aktiengesellschaft announced 15 Dec moves to save Euro 100 million and cut 200 jobs, in reorganising the business to integrate it into existing operations.
Administrative and functional activities from the Degussa business will be "largely transferred to BASF's existing regional platforms," BASF said, adding that the headquarters will move from Trostberg to Ludwigshafen.
"The construction chemicals business is performing very well as part of BASF," said Dr Andreas Kreimeyer, BASF's board member responsible for Performance Products, in a company statement. But Kreimeyer said that, "further strategic measures will enable us to continue to outperform the market and realize strong sales and earnings growth,"
BASF said it expects to save Euro 100 million a year by 2010 as a result of the changes and from other measures-bundling of procurement and standardisation of IT systems, for example. The reststructure will cost BASF about Euro75 million.
The moves will create five regional business units from 1 Jan 2007: four regional Construction Systems units for Europe, NAFTA, Asia Pacific and South America and an Admixture Systems Europe unit.
Commenting on the changes, Bernhard Hofmann, head of BASF's Construction Chemicals division, said in the statement that, "The full integration into BASF's unique Verbund will give us the necessary power and flexibility to achieve our ambitious goal to strengthen our position as leader in the construction chemicals business with global presence and global performance."
BASF said the main measures it is taking are:
• Expanding R&D activities in polymers for inorganics in Trostberg, Germany, as part of BASF's Research Verbund.
• Relius, which makes architectural and industrial coatings in Oldenburg and Memmingen, Germany, will become part of BASF's Coatings division, apart from Wall Systems, which will remain in Construction Chemicals.
• Oilfield chemicals businesses acquired from Degussa and Engelhard will be combined with BASF's business in a new unit, Global Oilfield Solutions, in the Performance Chemicals division."