Munich-based chemical company WACKER is strengthening its presence in India by opening a technical centre in Bengaluru. Located in the south of the country, it will serve as a regional competence centre for tile- adhesive applications. Continuing growth in the Indian construction sector is driving demand for personally tailored solutions for tile adhesives. The new technical centre enables WACKER to provide its customers in the local area with even better support in developing innovative solutions.
Although the global economy is slowing, growth in India is continuing to gain momentum, mainly due to the booming construction industry. A recent study forecasts that this South Asian country is set to become the world’s third largest construction market by 2025. Some 11.5 million houses will be built there every year. Demand for construction products and applications catering to the Indian market is rising at a correspondingly fast rate. That is why WACKER is expanding its local presence in India, opening a new technical centre in Bengaluru on August 7, 2019.
“The Bengaluru technical centre is another important milestone in our growth strategy for India,” said Andreas Collignon, head of the business unit Construction Polymers at WACKER. He added that the objective was to meet the individual needs of customers locally – especially in South India – and to support and test new applications. “Our technical centre sets new standards for service, consulting and knowledge transfer, enabling us to offer our customers and partners considerable added value,” expflained Anand Gopaladesikan, who heads WACKER India, during the opening ceremony. “Our goal is to contribute to the accelerated development of the tile adhesives market in India.”
The technical centre in Bengaluru specializes in the development of customized tile-adhesive applications. Adhesive strength and flexibility are vital for tile-adhesive formulations. WACKER’s polymeric binders improve how tiles adhere to the substrate, while permitting flexibility within the adhesive – an effective way of preventing cracks and breakage. WACKER markets its dispersible polymer powder formulations under various brands, such as VINNAPAS®, VINNACEL® and ETONIS®. These powders make the adhesive highly water-resistant and extremely easy to process. What is more, formulations containing WACKER’s polymer powders permit the use of special installation techniques, known as thin-bed technology. This makes significant savings possible in terms of raw materials, such as cement or sand, the latter being a key raw material in the construction sector. The global construction boom means that sand is becoming increasingly scarce.
The new technical centre in Bengaluru is WACKER’s third such facility in India. A centre for polymer applications was opened in Mumbai back in 2009. Located in the suburb of Goregaon, it houses Wacker Chemie India Pvt. Ltd. (a fully owned subsidiary) and Wacker Metroark Chemicals Pvt. Ltd. (a joint venture in which WACKER holds a 51% stake). Expanded in 2011, this technical centre supports customers from sectors such as construction, paints and coatings, plastics and textiles in developing new products and applications for the Indian market. WACKER also operates a technical centre for silicone products in Kolkata.
Like its counterpart in Mumbai, the new technical centre in Bengaluru adjoins a WACKER ACADEMY training centre, the purpose of which is to intensify knowledge transfer in the local market. WACKER ACADEMY courses cater to the specific needs of India’s construction- chemicals industry and give customers and business partners an opportunity to learn about all relevant aspects of tile-adhesive applications. Close proximity to the applications labs promotes a lively exchange of expertise and creates an optimal environment for customer service. WACKER ACADEMY provides an ideal, industry- specific platform for networking among customers, distribution partners and WACKER specialists.
WACKER can look back at over 80 years’ experience in the manufacture of polymer binders. Today, WACKER is a leading producer of state-of-the-art binders and polymeric additives based on polyvinyl acetate and vinyl acetate copolymers. These take the form of dispersible polymer powders, dispersions, solid resins, and solutions. The products are used in construction chemicals, paints, surface coatings, adhesives and nonwovens, as well as in fibre composites and polymeric materials based on renewable resources. WACKER operates production sites for polymer binders in Germany, China, South Korea and the USA, as well as a global sales network and technical centres in all major regions.
About WACKER in India
WACKER has been supplying chemical products to India since the 1970s. Established in Kolkata in 1998, the joint venture Wacker Metroark Chemicals Pvt. Ltd. began producing a wide variety of silicones as early as 1999. The local subsidiary, Wacker Chemie India Pvt. Ltd., was founded in 2007 in response to increasing market demands and potentials. WACKER opened a new office and technical centre for silicone and polymer applications in Mumbai in November 2009 and expanded it in 2011. With a workforce of almost 300 employees (including Wacker Metroark), WACKER generated annual sales of EUR 191 million in India in 2018 – an increase of more than 20 % year over year.