Located in the Biopolis research and development centre in the city state, it occupies a total of 1,100 square metres and contains state of the art facilities that will be focused on the development of the next generation of specialty chemicals and ingredients tailored for personal care and cosmetics players in the region and worldwide.
Also serving the home care, coatings and oil and gas categories, the laboratory will include dedicated teams working in the various specific business areas the facility is targeting.
Singapore as a regional focus for research and development
“Singapore has undergone an important transformation in recent years and is now established as a key knowledge and innovation hub in the Asia Pacific region”, said Pierre-Franck Valentin, vice president & general manager of Solvay Novecare Asia Pacific.
“By basing one of our global Innovation Centres in Singapore, we want to take advantage of the country’s research capabilities and ready infrastructure. Singapore’s strong intellectual property protection also makes it an ideal location to set up our new innovation laboratory that will address the challenges that the specialty chemicals industry faces in Asia."
Long-term plan to further expand the laboratory
The new facility has been built and fitted out with an investment that totalled $3 million and will help develop the company’s core competences in the Asia Pacific region and worldwide.
The development is part of a bigger investment in Singapore by the company that also includes a large-scale alkoxylation facility that is currently under construction and should be ready by 2015.
The company also says that it is planning a longer-term investment in the newly opened facility of S$8m in an effort to increase its capabilities in line with anticipated growth of the business.
Solvay expands into China...
Last year Solvay Novecare announced plans to increase global production of guar by 40%, thanks to expanded manufacturing capacity in China that will focus on the personal care category.
The facility will concentrate on the production of derivatized guar, which is a polymer produced from a bean that is mainly sourced in India.
As a naturally derived ingredient, it has proved to be increasing popular for natural and organic cosmetic and personal care products, where it is most commonly used as a hair conditioning ingredient.