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DuPont Announces Polyester Joint Ventures

NEW YORK DuPont, Wilmington, Del., recently announced its intent to form two joint ventures to develop, make and sell polyester with companies in Mexico, Japan and Turkey. A three-way joint venture with DuPont, Alpek S.A. de C.V. and Teijin Ltd. would market polyester filament yarn in America. This joint venture is expected to begin operations by the end of the year. It follows last years DuPont and Alpek announcement to combine their polyester staple fiber businesses.Also, DuPont and Haci Omer Sabanci Holding S.A., have announced their intent to form a joint venture to develop, make and sell polyester filament, staple, resins, intermediates, and related products for markets throughout the European region, the Middle East and Africa. This venture is expected to begin operations in the fourth quarter. Both joint ventures are subject to regulatory approvals.DuPont Ventures ForthIn making these announcements, Eduard J. Van Wely, DuPont senior vice president, said: These are the next steps in our plan to adopt a new business model for DuPonts Polyester Enterprise based on strong joint ventures. We believe these joint ventures with valued partners are in the best interests of the marketplace and our shareholders and will enable our polyester businesses to maximize the efficient use of capital.DuPont would be a 50-percent partner in the filament polyester joint venture, with Alpek and Teijin owning the remaining 50 percent. The joint venture will have more than 850 million pounds of capacity and revenues of approximately $600 million. It would include all of the polyester polymer, filament and textured yarn facilities in Monterrey, Mexico.DuPonts Dacron polyester textile filament facilities at its Cape Fear and Kinston production sites in North Carolina would be included.According to Jose de Jesus Valdez S., president of Alpek, the joint venture does not include Teijin production facilities. Teijin contribution will be in technology, new product development and marketing innovations.The joint venture will supply 50 to 60 percent of the polyester filament capacity in North America. Approximately 50 percent would go to apparel textiles, 25 percent home fabrics and the remainder specialty products.DuPonts polyester filament business is part of DuPonts Global Polyester Enterprise, which includes polyester intermediates, staple, fiberfill, films and resins businesses.DuPont and Teijin recently announced that they will form a 50/50 global joint venture to make and sell polyester films. On April 1, DuPont-Akra Polyester, a newly formed company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., began producing polyester staple fiber for markets primarily in the Americas as part of a separate joint venture between DuPont and Alpek.Alpek, a wholly owned subsidiary of Alfa, is one of the largest private petrochemical concerns in Latin America, with sales in excess of $1.3 billion. Its main areas of business include raw materials for polyester and nylon, polyester and nylon fibers, polypropylene, polystyrene and polyurethane plastics and intermediates. Plant modernizations are being considered which would increase spinning capacity through new high-speed spinning equipment.The DuPont/Sabanci joint venture will have revenues of $1 billion annually and employ 4,500 people. It would include DuPonts PTA (pure terephtalic acid) and resins businesses at Wilton, United Kingdom and Dacron® filament and staple businesses in Pontypool, United Kingdom., and Uentrop, Germany.Also included would be Sabancis polyester filament, staple, resins, bottles and DMT (Dimethyl terephtalate) based in Adana, and other sites in Turkey and the Sabanci texturizing plant in Garforth, United Kingdom.Strength In NumbersThe Sabanci Group has combined revenues of $10 billion and is one of the two largest industrial and financial conglomerates in Turkey and employs approximately 30,000 people and operates in tire and tire reinforcement materials, insurance, textiles, chemicals and automotive.The group has grown both through expansion of existing businesses and by the formation of 50/50 joint ventures with multinationals such as Toyota, DuPont, Phillip Morris and International Paper.DuPont and Sabanci would form a separate company that will manage this polyester business under a single management team. It would have full access to DuPont polyester technology and brand management resources, including brands such as Dacron®, Coolmax®, Melinar® and Lasar+®.According to Van Wely, the joint ventures were motivated by a consolidating industry world-wide and a recent downturn in polyester business. Through a network of alliances total polyester revenue is expected to total about $5 billion. by Virgina S. Boland, New York Correspondant.

May 1999