Chemicals & Processes

Since the volume and profitability crisis, the chemicals industry has experienced an unexpected rebound driven by the streamlining of capacity in Europe and the US combined with very strong demand from emerging economies

Nevertheless, each segment is struggling with its own unique challenges in Europe, including:

  • Petrochemicals: restructuring and cost-cutting, due to the lower competitiveness of crackers
  • Organic chemistry: stable overall, with increasingly refined energy management and growth opportunities in environmental sectors
  • Polymers and performance materials: gradual penetration of “green chemicals” and the expected rapid expansion of China (now a net importer of many polymers)
  • Intermediaries in pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and food: gradual penetration of “green chemicals” and the end of relocations to low-cost countries for small volume

Incremental revenue/cost improvements, often initiated by key players, have become obsolete in the industry, with real breakthrough strategies required to gain and maintain market leadership:

  • Definition and execution of external growth strategies in Europe: The reconfiguration of European footprints and increased development in Asian and Latin American markets. The segmentation / streamlining of product portfolio and services, with resources reallocated to more attractive markets from a strategic, commercial and industrial standpoint
  • Innovation and product/technology development: A clear and strong position on sustainable development focused on reduced energy consumption/emissions and resource preservation
  • Differentiation through customer service: The identification of real customer needs and development of internal plans to meet those needs, leading to the creation of breakthrough offers (quality, delivery times, costs) that add value across the entire value chain (suppliers, customers, customers of customers)
  • Operational excellence: Systematic and structured initiatives across all levers to achieve the standards and best practices of ultra-competitive industries (e.g. automotive, electronics)