Röhm and OQ have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to evaluate the construction of a new production plant for methyl methacrylate (MMA) on the U.S. Gulf Coast. The proposed facility has a design capacity of 250,000 tons of MMA annually. It will utilize Röhm’s proprietary ethylene-based LiMA technology. Under the MoU terms, OQ Chemicals will integrate the plant into its existing site and provide raw materials, utilities, and site services to Röhm. The partners intend to commission the new plant in 2023, creating about 70 direct jobs.
“We welcome the opportunity to work together with Röhm, one of the global leaders in Methacrylate Chemicals. This new partnership offers significant growth potential for our oxo business. It will also strengthen our operations at Bay City as we will provide utilities and site services,” comments Dr. Oliver Borgmeier, Managing Director of OQ Chemicals. “The new project aligns perfectly with our strategy of working with new partners to enhance value to our oxo business,” adds Ahmed Al Jahdhami, OQ Chemicals Chairman and Downstream CEO.
“We are very pleased to have found in OQ a very competent and reliable partner. This project will strengthen the reliability of our supply chain towards our valued customers in the Americas and globally,” says Dr. Michael Pack, CEO of Röhm. “Basic engineering for this C2-based technology has been under way for some time already and will allow us to decide on the final investment in the first half of 2021.”
“The signing is an important step towards the realization of the so-called LiMA project,” explains Ron Ayles, Managing Partner at the financial sponsor Advent International. “With its implementation, Röhm will strengthen their technological competence and further expand their leading market position. We are especially pleased to support this groundbreaking new technology and that we have found as partner our former portfolio company OQ Chemicals, that we have built a good understanding and trust with over the many years.”
LiMA, an acronym for ‘Leading in Methacrylates’, is considered the most efficient MMA production technology developed to date. MMA is an essential precursor for the acrylic glass PLEXIGLAS® (branded in the Americas as ACRYLITE®). Other applications include protective screens for LCDs, adhesives, finishes, floor coatings, and dental products.