M&As: Albis to acquire Wipag; Holland to buy T&T


Effective January 2018, Germany’s Albis Plastic will acquire Wipag Group , which produces carbon fibre compounds for injection moulding, with sites in Neuburg (Donau) and Gardelegen (both in Germany).

With this acquisition Albis, the Hamburg distributor and compounder of technical thermoplastics, has invested further into its recycling activities. Wipag's recycling technology takes waste carbon fibre, which comes mostly from the automotive industry, and processes it into reinforced carbon fibre compounds. In the future, Albis says it will offer polypropylene and polyamide carbon fibre-filled compounds. With PPCF compounds a significant weight and cost advantage compared with highly-filled, glass fire reinforced PA types can be achieved, providing potential for exploitation of light-weighting requirements.

From 2021, newly registered cars in the EU will only be permitted to emit on average a maximum of 95 g of CO2 per km. Automotive OEM’s and suppliers will need to comply with these new CO2 emission limits to avoid penalties. Over the last few years, weight reduction concepts such as metal substitution and engine downsizing have been extensively utilised but cost efficient CFRP concepts provide new opportunities for weight-saving.

"In Wipag, the Albis Group has gained a company which, on the one hand, has cutting-edge and forward-looking CFRP technology and, on the other, has years of experience in the closed-loop recycling business," says Philip O. Krahn, CEO of Albis. Closed-loop describes techniques such as the composite separation of instrument panels or the removal of paint from bumpers as part of the materials recycling process. These highly-developed closed-loop processes provide an ideal opportunity for eco-friendly production.

Furthermore, WIPAG also receives high-quality recyclable PP from post-industrial and post-consumer applications, from various sources, for use in its process. "These open-loop activities provide an excellent platform for our ALTECH® ECO PP compounds and expand our range of high quality Near-to-Prime® Recycling Compounds, which are already used in numerous applications for the automotive industry," says Bernd Sparenberg, Vice President Technical Compounds at ALBIS.

In 2016, Albis, which has approximately 1,200 employees, achieved sales of EUR903 million. With 23 foreign subsidiaries, the Hamburg based company is represented in Europe with a growing presence in North Africa, the Far East and America. Albis produces plastic compounds and masterbatches at seven sites; Hamburg (Germany), Zülpich (Germany), Obernburg (Germany), Manchester (UK), Humenné (Slovakia), Changshu (China) and Duncan (USA). In Duncan, South Carolina and Obernburg


Meanwhile, in other news, resin distributor M. Holland Company will acquire T&T Marketing, a distributor of polymer resins and compounds to the wire and cable market. Headquartered in Andover, Massachusetts, T&T has annual revenues of about US$40 million and distributes throughout the US and Canada. It was set up in 1988 and is a family owned business.

“We identified wire and cable as an attractive market segment, but lacked the technical expertise and product portfolio to effectively compete,” said Marc Fern, M. Holland commercial Vice President. “T&T is extraordinarily strong in both, making it a perfect complement to our Business Development Group.” M. Holland formed its Business Development Group in 2016 to apply focused marketing, technical and applications development resources to certain markets. The Group currently is comprised of market development teams focused on automotive, healthcare, flexible packaging, rotational moulding and colour and compounding markets.

T&T Marketing has 26 employees and ships from seven strategically located warehouses in the US and Canada. It provides a wide range of testing and applications development services at its lab in Easton, Pennsylvania.

“First and foremost, we think that T&T Marketing will be a great cultural fit,” said Ed Holland, President/CEO of Holland. He also noted that T&T Marketing’s technical and commercial teams each have more than 30 years of industry-specific experience.

This transaction is expected to close in November 2017. Terms were not disclosed.

M. Holland sells in more than 650,000 tonnes of resin to more than 4,000 clients annually.


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