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Sweden-based specialty chemicals company Perstorp inaugurated on Feb. 20 in western India a  pentaerythritol production plant that it built and commissioned to meet growing demand for the chemical, which is used in synthetic lubricants, antioxidants and coatings.

The facility is located in Sayakha, Bharuch, in the state of Gujarat.

The project was initially announced in November 2019, with expectations to start production in the first quarter of 2022. At that time, the company said penta has a wide range of application areas, serving as an essential building block ingredient in synthetic lubricants, antioxidants, paintings, coatings, inks and adhesives.

“This is the largest investment in Asia so far, in Perstorp’s history,” Gorm Jensen, Perstorp’s executive vice president commercial and innovation, said in a Feb. 21 news release. “This plant will increase the availability and reliability of products for current, as well as new customers, reducing lead times with about 50% for Asian customers.”

Jensen noted the plant is strategically located close to ports, rails and roadways. “This will help to ensure that Perstorp can supply products effectively throughout India and across all of Asia,” he added. “At the same time, the plant is well positioned to also export products globally.”

At the new India plant, Perstorp will produce a penta product mix that includes Perstorp’s renewable based Voxtar, as well as offering penta mono and calcium formate. The plant will use renewably sourced raw materials as well as a hybrid source of electricity.

The company said that while it already produces penta in Sweden, Germany and the United States, the India plant investment will represent a significant expansion of its global capacity. At the new site, Perstorp can produce annually up to 40,000 metric tons of pentaerythritol and 26,000 tons of calcium formate.

The site covers nearly 115,000 square meters – 1.2 million square feet – and will employ about 120 people.