OSWIECIM, Poland — Polish synthetic rubber producer Synthos S.A. and Group Michelin have extended a nearly decade-old licensing agreement that will allow Synthos to increase production capacity of a specialty rubber used in tire manufacturing at its plants in Czech Republic.
The deal will allow the Polish chemical group to increase capacity for neodymium polybutadiene rubber (Nd BR rubber) — a specialized butadiene rubber used to help reduce rolling resistance — at its plants in Kralupy, Czech Republic, by 65 percent to 132,000 metric tons per year, according to a statement from Synthos CEO Zbigniew Warmuz.
The memorandum of agreement builds on a 2007 licensing agreement that involves Compagnie Générale des Etablissements Michelin of Clermont-Ferrand, France; and Michelin Recherche et Technique SA, based in Granges-Paccot, Switzerland, as the licensors.
Synthos did not give details of cost for extending the license but said it comprised a flat fee and a variable component in the form of royalties depending on the sales volume of the licensed products.
The deal with the French tire maker is part of a long-term strategy "of strengthening its market position and creating a modern product portfolio attracting a high level of profitability," said the CEO.
In 2014 Synthos disclosed plans to build plant in Brazil to produce Nd BR to Michelin and Pirelli & C. S.p.A. facilities in Brazil.
Mr. Warmuz's comments accompanied the release of Synthos' financial statement for fiscal 2016, which showed a 17-percent in group sales, including a 20-percent gain in SR sales, which the company linked to gains in growth in the European vehicle and tire markets.
Patrick Raleigh is editor of European Rubber Journal, a United Kingdom-based sister publication of Tire Business