Tuesday - December 9, 2014

Inauguration of the TDI-plant Dormagen

Adress by Patrick Thomas

Chairman of the Board of Management of Bayer MaterialScience AG

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Sehr geehrte Frau Ministerpräsidentin Kraft,
sehr geehrter Herr Landrat Petrauschke,
sehr geehrter Herr Bürgermeister Lierenfeld,
sehr geehrter Herr Dekkers,
verehrte Gäste,
liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen,

heute ist für unser Unternehmen ein besonderer Tag. Ein Tag, an dem es um eines unserer Erfolgsprodukte geht: um die Chemikalie Toluylen-Diisocyanat., kurz: TDI. Ein Tag, an dem es um moderne, effiziente Produktion geht, ein Tag, der gut ist für uns und die Region.

Soweit mein Einstieg in deutscher Sprache. Unter uns sind viele Gäste aus dem europäischen Ausland. Ich bitte um Verständnis, dass ich in Englisch fortfahre.

TDI - well, we can say with reasonable certainty that most of us slept on it last night, or sat on it if we traveled here by car.

We can be sure of that because toluene diisocyanate is a precursor for flexible polyurethane foam. And it is used in comfortable mattresses, today’s car seats, upholstered furniture and many other applications. It is a plastic in high demand worldwide, one that helps bring more comfort to everyday life.

Today we are officially starting up a new plant for the production of TDI. Not just any plant, but the most efficient facility of its kind anywhere in the world.

We have made a core investment of EUR 250 million in this plant. If we add to that the costs of the associated peripheral and utility facilities, we come to a total capital expenditure of more than EUR 400 million. It is the biggest project in our industrial business at any of our German locations in the last decade.

Ladies and gentlemen, honored guests,
Thank you for accepting our invitation to join us here in celebrating the start of production. On behalf of my colleagues on the Board of Management and our employees, it gives me great pleasure to welcome you on this occasion. And I am especially delighted, Premier Kraft, that you made it possible to be with us today. It brings to mind last year’s celebration in Cologne to mark 150 years of Bayer, when you said in advance that you would come to Dormagen. We all know what it’s like to have a jam-packed calendar, which makes it all the more gratifying that it actually worked out. So welcome to Bayer MaterialScience, welcome to Dormagen.

At this point I also would like to offer a special word of welcome to Dr. Marijn Dekkers, Chairman of the Board of Management of the entire Bayer Group. As we all know, the Group and MaterialScience will soon be going their separate ways. We know it will be a separation on the friendliest of terms. That is our firm intention. And the presence of Dr. Dekkers here today clearly shows we have his support in this undertaking.

MaterialScience is superbly positioned worldwide and optimally prepared to operate independently. Our products are in demand, our customers value our innovative power, and we are leaders in our markets. We have a great team and highly advanced production plants at locations around the world. Look at any region, regardless of where – and you will see we are close to our buyer industries and to our customers. With the new TDI plant here at the Dormagen site, we have once again put a new milestone in place. We are starting up a production unit here that will make us the envy of the competition.

Technological leadership – that is what we stake our claim to in our sector. In addition to innovations at the product level, Bayer MaterialScience has always concentrated on developing new and improved production processes. That is one of our particular strengths. Our goal is to help protect the environment and to provide our own company and our customers with cost benefits and technological advantages. And our efforts toward these goals have succeeded perfectly with this new TDI plant. The process technology used here is setting new global standards for efficient, climate-friendly TDI production.

The following are a few interesting facts: our process enables us to achieve energy savings of up to 60 percent compared with a conventional plant of the same size. Furthermore, the technology requires up to 80 percent less solvent than a conventional system. This contributes to a far more positive energy and environmental balance. And it is also giving us a decisive competitive edge. The new plant also satisfies the most stringent safety requirements.

Ladies and gentlemen,
Sustainability is a factor playing a major role not only here in Dormagen, but also in every dimension of the MaterialScience strategy. All of our activities are guided by a far-reaching sustainability concept. We have made it our obligation to take a holistic view of value chains, taking into account not only considerations affecting society, but also ecological and economic aspects.

As I mentioned, our dedicated and well-trained employees make an indispensable contribution to the success of our company. They should find the opportunity to develop to their fullest potential at MaterialScience.

The new plant has resulted in the creation of 20 new jobs here in Dormagen. That may seem like a modest figure at first glance.

But I would like to remind you that the positive effects of a major project like the TDI plant are felt far beyond the confines of our company. The construction phase of the project provided work for more than 500 external personnel. Many of the contractors are from this region. And once the facility is up and running, companies from Dormagen and the surrounding area will continue to be involved in maintenance, construction and repair work, plus provision of technical services in the area around the new plant. The existing upstream and logistics jobs will be secure. The same applies to thousands of additional jobs related to TDI production in the value chain, in the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and throughout Germany.

Ladies and gentlemen,
With the new TDI plant, Dormagen is now our center for TDI production in Europe. This is our signal that we stand behind not only Germany as a location but especially the chemical industry center of North Rhine-Westphalia. Our industry is a basis for this state’s prosperity. We want to maintain and strengthen this foundation through continued investment. For that we need reliable conditions in politics and administration — and not least, the public acceptance that is so necessary. That is what we are campaigning for, a goal we are applying our efforts to. And the TDI project shows we are succeeding.

The plan behind the new plant in Dormagen first emerged in 2008. And today we are officially putting the facility into operation. I would like to express my thanks to everyone who took part in the successful realization of that plan: the politicians who supported the project, and the authority that approved the permit for it, namely the district government in Cologne. My gratitude also goes to the planners, engineers, steel construction contractors, mechanics and skilled tradesmen. And the list of those deserving a word of thanks would be incomplete without mentioning our colleagues from Bayer Technology Services, and not least our own employees from MaterialScience and the project team led by Steffen Kühling, the TDI Program Manager.

A first-rate production facility was created here. It is a masterpiece of the art of engineering. All that remains to wish for is that the plant will always produce safely, that it will be a reliable supplier for the rapidly growing international TDI market, and thus make its contribution to the future success of our company.

Thank you for your attention.

Forward-Looking Statements
This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer’s public reports which are available on the Bayer website at The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.