On 20 May, 2016, The Chemours Company (Chemours) announced that its new 200,000 t/a TiO2 project in the Altamira site (in the southern part of Tamaulipas, Mexico) has been put into operation. The plant will produce Chemours’ Ti-Pure™ brand TiO2 through a chloride production process.
Chemours’ Altamira TiO2 plant has always been known for its high efficiency and low production costs. Early in Nov. 2014, DuPont decided to expand the 200,000 t/a TiO2 production capacity of its Altamira plant, after which the plant was expected to reach full capacity in 2016. In Dec. 2015, construction of the project was completed.
After the new 200,000 t/a project was put into production, the total TiO2 production capacity of Chemours hit 1.17 million t/a, further consolidating the company’s leading position in the industry, according to CCM’s research and analysis.
Other than increasing capacity for the company, the new project will meet client demand for high-quality TiO2 and the low-cost advantage of the Altamira plant will improve Chemours’ overall TiO2 production efficiency.
“This adjustment to industrial structure is expected to save Chemours about USD20 million annually.” one trade source commented.
Since 2013, when the global TiO2 market began to slide as a whole, Chemours, as a leading enterprise in the industry, has not been performing well.
According to its 2015 financial report, Chemours’ sales from Chemours Titanium Technologies fell by 19% YoY to USD2.39 billion and their adjusted EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation and Amortization) plummeted by 121.70% YoY to USD326 million.
Chemours Titanium Technologies 2015 sales
Source: The Chemours Company & CCM
“Actually, facing a slide in performance, Chemours has remained resolute and has been vigorously reducing production costs by adjusting its industrial structure and streamlining their workforce,” said Dean Wu, editor of Titanium Dioxide China News, CCM.
“Judging from global TiO2 market dynamics, the adjustments made by Chemours to its industrial structure have been very precise,” Dean said.
When the TiO2 price dropped significantly in the second half of 2015, Chemours reduced its output to control market supply, stabilizing its product price; since Jan. 2016, the global market price of TiO2 has been recovering relatively quickly, so Chemours has put a new production line into production to meet increasing market demand.
In Sept. 2015, Chemours closed its Edge Moor manufacturing site, a TiO2 production base, located outside Wilmington, Delaware, and shut down a TiO2 production line, which utilized inefficient production equipment, at its Johnsonville plant in New Johnsonville, Tennessee.
Together, these actions eliminated roughly 150,000 t/a of TiO2 production capacity while refocusing TiO2 production at four manufacturing sites in New Johnsonville, Tennessee; DeLisle, Mississippi; Altamira, Mexico; and Taiwan, China, that employ the full range of Chemours TiO2 technological strengths.
And in Dec. 2015, Chemours announced that it was to lay off about 400 employees in 2016, saving costs of about USD50 million for the company annually.
CCM is the leading market intelligence provider for China’s agriculture, chemicals, food & ingredients and life science markets. Founded in 2001, CCM offers a range of data and content solutions, from price and trade data to industry newsletters and customized market research reports. Our clients include Monsanto, DuPont, Shell, Bayer, and Syngenta. CCM is a brand of Kcomber Inc.