BASF Catalysts doubles production capacity; opens innovation campus
BASF Catalysts India Private Limited has inaugurated its new mobile emissions catalysts manufacturing site. The site includes a new 47,000-squaremeter production plant, which replaces an existing BASF plant in Chennai and is the culmination of a 3-year expansion project, which has doubled the company’s catalyst manufacturing capacity in India.
World-class manufacturing lines are housed in the new plant, producing a full range of catalyst solutions, including light duty, heavy duty and motorcycle emissions catalysts to meet the growing market demand and customer technology needs. The site produces BASF EMPRO emissions control solutions including the ThreeWay Catalyst (TWC), Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC), Catalyzed Soot Filter (CSF) and Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) Catalyst.
“Around the Asia Pacific region, and especially here in India, mobility is ever more important. At the same time, more and more vehicles are being manufactured locally in India. To meet the demands of this growth, according to BASF’s Asia Pacific strategy and in support of Make in India and other government initiatives, we are expanding our local production network in the region,” said Sanjeev Gandhi, member of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE responsible for Asia Pacific.
“With the expansion of our manufacturing capacity and capabilities in Chennai, BASF Catalysts is better positioned to respond to the increase in demand for advanced emissions control solutions in India. It will also help our customers meet increasingly stringent requirements such as the Indian government’s decision to advance from BS IV emissions norms to BS VI norms by 2020,” Dirk Demuth, Senior Vice President, Mobile Emissions Catalysts, BASF, said. “Furthermore, the new site will produce advanced heavy duty emissions catalysts, which will allow us to better serve the fast-growing automotive markets in India,” he added.
BASF will also invest Euro 3 billion (`21,000 crore) in the next 5 years in the Asia Pacific Region to build new capacities. “India will get a fair share of investment. The quantum of investment in India depends on how competitive are the plans submitted by the Indian arm,” said Gandhi. Over the past 4 years, BASF has invested around Euro 300 million in manufacturing and research and development activities in India. “With initiatives like Make in India, Smart Cities, and Swachh Bharat, India is in the forefront of rapid and sustainable development. This offers significant opportunities for the chemical industry as well as BASF. We are investing actively in India to realise these opportunities. The expansion of our mobile emissions catalysts plant in Chennai is another example of our continued focus on investing in assets for growth,” Raman Ramachandran, Head of BASF operations in South Asia, said. “Through its local subsidiaries BASF India Limited, BASF Chemicals India Private Limited and BASF Catalysts India Private Limited, the BASF Group has invested approximately €300 million, over the past 4 years, in manufacturing and Research and Development,” he added.
The group has also inaugurated its new Innovation Campus Asia Pacific, located in Mumbai, India. The project will involve a total expected investment of up to €50 million from BASF Group, and marks the Group’s
largest research and development (R&D) investment in South Asia. All global research operations at BASF Innovation Campus Asia Pacific (Mumbai) will be housed under BASF Chemicals India Private Limited, a 100% subsidiary of BASF SE. The new innovation campus will expand the company’s existing R&D activities in India to include global and regional research on a wide range of specialty chemicals. Topics will cover personal and home care, process development, organic synthesis, crop protection and many more.
“A growing need for energy, food and clean water, limited resources, and a rising world population pose huge challenges. Innovations based on chemistry will enable new solutions,” Martin Brudermueller, Vice Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE and Chief Technology Officer, said. “As a consequence, BASF is expanding its research and development network, especially to emerging markets in Asia, as we want to drive innovation addressing customer and market needs at an early stage. Mumbai will be another powerful regional innovation hub for BASF, with proximity to the dynamically growing Indian market.”
The Innovation Campus significantly expands BASF’s research capacities in India, which were established in 2005 and expanded in 2014 to cover agricultural research, organic synthesis, molecular modelling and advanced process research. The new Innovation Campus includes state-of-the-art laboratories for chemical synthesis, application and process development, as well as analytics.
It brings all new and existing research and development activities by BASF in Mumbai under one roof. Combined with the broad range of current development activities, Innovation Campus Asia Pacific (Mumbai) will enable global know-how exchange and foster collaboration with customers, industrial and academic partners. The campus can accommodate up to 300 scientists and will bring together top scientists from India and other parts of the world.
“We see the demand for innovative solutions in many industries in India, including automotive as well as food and nutrition. Moreover, India is now home to a wide range of high caliber scientists and excellent domestic research capabilities,” Sanjeev Gandhi, Member of the Board of Executive Directors, BASF SE, responsible for Asia Pacific, said.
BASF has expanded its presence in India during the past several years, both in terms of local manufacturing as well as in providing tailored solutions for the challenges of mobility, housing, environmental protection and hygiene. Through its local subsidiaries, namely BASF India Limited, BASF Chemicals India Private Limited and BASF Catalysts India Private Limited, BASF Group has invested actively in India to realize these opportunities, with approximately €300 million investment over the past 4 years in manufacturing and R&D.
The approximately 20,000 squaremeter campus is a collaborative space housing scientific and technical laboratories, modern offices, a full-scale auditorium, cafeteria and employee amenities. The building features a secondary façade to minimize overheating from direct sunlight, energy efficient LED lights, rainwater harvesting, a reflective roof with photovoltaic panels and a windmill to generate renewable energy.
Over 50% of the lighting in the building will be generated from renewable sources, supported by many innovative solutions from BASF. It is designed to meet the silver standards of LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), the world’s most widely used third-party verification for green buildings.
In 2016, BASF Group’s research pipeline encompassed around 3,000 projects, and spending on research and development was €1.863 billion. Around 10,000 employees work in research and development worldwide. Globally, BASF maintains a collaboration network of around 600 excellent universities, research institutions and companies around the world.
One of BASF’s 3 central technology platforms, Advanced Materials & Systems Research, has been headquartered at the Innovation Campus Asia Pacific (Shanghai) since January 2016, headed by Harald Lauke, President of the technology platform and Regional Research Representative for Asia Pacific. The other 2 technology platforms, Chemical Engineering & Process Research and Bioscience Research, are respectively headquartered in Europe and North America. Innovation Campus Asia Pacific (Mumbai) will house research activities from all these platforms.
Through its local subsidiary, BASF India Limited, BASF Group has also been operating an Agricultural Research Station in Pune since 2015, and an R&D Center in Mangalore since 2014, focusing on offering technical and product development support to local and global automotive coatings customers. These R&D facilities form a strong network to drive and support both regional and global innovation projects.
BASF Chennai plant in Mahindra World City