Albemarle to Double Production for Specialty Polymer Catalysts and Components

Rapid economic growth in emerging economies and increased technological innovation in consumer goods is increasing the demand for packaged goods, plastic films and building materials, which in turn is driving demand for high-performance polyolefin plastics like polyethylene and polypropylene.

To meet rising demand for catalysts from the world's polyolefin manufacturers, Albemarle Corporation, a leading global manufacturer and supplier of catalysts, will double manufacturing capacity for specialty polymer catalysts and components.

Capacity will be increased primarily through the construction of a new catalysts manufacturing unit at Albemarle's Process Development Center (PDC) in Baton Rouge. Already underway, the $15 million expansion is expected to be complete in the fourth quarter of 2008.

John Nicols, Albemarle Vice President-Catalysts, said, "This expansion will reinforce Albemarle's leadership position in the polymer catalysts and additives markets, and enhance our efforts to deliver unique and compelling solutions to our customers."

Albemarle is the leading global supplier of organometallics and single- site catalyst activators to the polyolefin and elastomers industries. With offerings including methylaluminoxane (MAO) and organoborons, the company is rapidly growing its business by offering custom specialty catalyst development and manufacture.

"The expansion at the PDC demonstrates Albemarle's commitment to support our customers' growth by supplying finished single-site and Ziegler-Natta catalysts and components, such as metallocenes and activators, needed to produce unique, high-performance polyolefins," said Amy Motto, Global Business Manager for Albemarle's specialty polymer catalyst and component business.

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