Ashland Aqualon Functional Ingredients, a commercial unit of Ashland Inc., recently began construction on a new nonionic synthetic thickener manufacturing facility in Alizay, France. The new manufacturing facility is scheduled for completion and startup in spring 2012 and will reportedly significantly increase the company’s global capacity for Aquaflow™ nonionic synthetic associative thickeners (NSATs).

“The new facility is strategically positioned in western Europe to shorten lead times and improve service for our customers,” said Jason Homer, global business manager of Coatings Additives for Ashland Aqualon Functional Ingredients. “Europe, in particular, has recently seen a dramatic increase in demand for Aquaflow NSATs. This new facility complements our existing manufacturing capacity and gives us flexibility to improve continuity of supply for all customers worldwide.”

The new facility will have capability to produce the full line of low-, mid- and high-shear Aquaflow thickeners. “Aquaflow thickeners, which have recently gained tremendous market acceptance, provide paint manufacturers with greatly improved application properties compared to competitive technologies on the market today,” said Dale MacDonald, vice president of Coatings Additives for Ashland Aqualon Functional Ingredients. “This major investment demonstrates Ashland’s commitment to the market and our dedication to creating innovative rheology solutions. With Aquaflow assets positioned in the U.S. and now in Europe as well, we will be better-positioned to service the needs of our global customers.”

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