Italmatch Forms Additives Unit

Italmatch Chemicals Group formed a lubricant additives business unit in the wake of Decembers acquisition of Elco Corp. and parent company Detrex. Italmatch said the new unit, named Lubricant Performance Additives will work to create new additive packages using the combined chemistries of Elco and Italmatch.

The new unit now has two testing facilities, one in Cleveland, the other in the Arese, Italy, near Milan. These locations will allow for technology and application testing, opening the door to new product launches in the future.

Wherever in the world were manufacturing, be it Cleveland or Arese, we as LPA will be in charge of and responsible for that business, Dave Millin, LPAs global vice-president sales and marketing, told Lube Report.

Millin said the merger made sense as both companies sales were predominantly in the lubricants area. Elco has always been known for being a producer of sulfurized extreme pressure additives whereas Italmatch are certainly one of the leading producers of phosphorus derivatives. Whatever youre doing in the lubricants sector, you need sulfur and phosphorus, particularly in metalworking.

For the time being, however, the company will focus on further developing existing products. Were first going to expand on what weve been doing, which is taking derivatives of our sulfur and phosphorus and the proprietary polymer esters KetjenLube and Dapraphos, and to blend those with other components to create solutions we can then deliver to the marketplace, Millin explained. According to Italmatchs web site, KetjenLube is its trade name for di-esters, polyol esters and complex esters used in lubricants. Dapraphos is the companys trade name for phosphite esters, phosphate esters and phosphonates used in applications such as lubricants, chemical intermediates and extreme pressure additives; and also ester copolymers used in lubricants.

Were going to combine the technology Italmatch has on phosphorus with Elcos on sulfur and zinc dialkyldithiophosphates. Not just in components but also into additive packages that can combine chemistry from both entities, he continued, adding that there would be a continuous evolution of products that will be customized and tailored so that they fit exactly with performance requirements of the market.

Cleveland, Ohio-based Elco manufactures high performance specialty chemicals. Elcos primary business areas include additives such as antioxidants, extreme pressure agents and rust and corrosion inhibitors for industrial lubricants, greases, metalworking and other fluids. It also makes high purity hydrochloric acid for the semiconductor industry.

Italmatch, which is controlled by private investment company Ardian France S.A., is a global specialty additives company. The Genoa, Italy-based company offers specialized performance additives for lubricants, oil and gas, water treatment and plastics. Its best known lube brand is Ketjenlube polymeric esters, and it also makes oleoesters, friction modifiers and succinic and phosphorus derivatives as well as phosphate esters.

Italmatch is the main European manufacturer of phosphorus pentasulfide, a key raw material for producing ZDDP antiwear and antioxidant additives - which Elco makes. The Italian company has six manufacturing plants in Europe, four in the Asia-Pacific region and two in the United States, with sales and distribution centers in Belgium, China and Japan.