Infineum Grows Footprint in China

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Additives maker Infineum signed a lease agreement for a three-story building for its proposed new business and technology center in China, continuing its Asia-Pacific expansion.

Located in Jinqiao, Shanghai, the new 4,500 square meter (nearly 50,000 sq. ft.) complex will include a laboratory and office space, and is due to open in early 2014, according to an April 24 news release. The primary objective will be to conduct technology work in support of local customers and to coordinate and support business development in China, including the proposed wholly-owned blending plant in Zhangjiagang, Infineum stated.

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In May 2012, the company announced plans to build a new lubricant additive manufacturing complex in Zhangjiagang Industrial Park, about 100 miles northwest of Shanghai. At the time, the additives maker said the investments first phase would be focused on blending capability to meet the needs of local customers, with component plant investments coming later, as the market grows.

Infineum said the signing of the lease for the business and technology center reflects the companys desire to better serve the changing global market and to accelerate its growth in China. Automotive sales in China reached 19 million in 2012, and the countrys vehicle population is expected to reach 350 million by 2013, the additives maker said, bringing a huge increase in the requirement for lubricant additives.

The markets size and future growth means it is vital we have a strong presence in China to support our existing network and to provide a platform for future expansion in the future, said Fu Limin, Infineum China managing director.

Trevor Russell, executive vice president of Infineum International Ltd., noted that success in China is critical to the companys future. Russell said he was confident that by setting up in Jinqiao Park, with its access to outstanding local talent, we will be able to accelerate towards our goal of being the leading additives player in China. Infineum restructured its corporate leadership team effective April 1, which included moving newly appointed sales and supply executive vice president Russell to Singapore.

The company currently operates an additive manufacturing facility on Jurong Island, Singapore, which has both component and blending capability. It is also the site of the companys new salicylates facility, under construction and scheduled for start-up at the end of 2013.

Set up in 1999, Milton Hill, U.K.-based Infineum is a joint venture between ExxonMobil and Shell.

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