500 million euro investment could provide for up to 200 new jobs at the Lülsdorf complex
Duisburg/Niederkassel, January 23, 2020 – PCC SE is considering the construction of several production facilities at the Lülsdorf site south of Cologne. The project relates to a plant complex for the production of ethylene oxide and its downstream products, whereby the CO2 emissions would be recovered and processed in a manner compatible with climate protection aspirations. The owner-managed company based in Duisburg is currently holding extensive talks with Evonik Industries AG, the company that operates the site in Lülsdorf, as well as with the city of Niederkassel and other relevant authorities. If the PCC plans come to fruition, the new facilities could create up to 200 new jobs. The project, for which the investment outlay is likely to exceed 500 million euros, would make an important contribution to the development of the long-established Lülsdorf industrial site and the surrounding region.
“The project is part of our international growth strategy. At the same time, we would be strengthening the Lülsdorf site, which with its long tradition of chemical manufacturing and its mature infrastructure is favorite for the project in the current investigational phase,” explains Waldemar Preussner, company founder and Chairman of the Administrative Board of PCC SE. At the core of the project is construction of a plant for the production of high-purity ethylene oxide (EO). This basic chemical is used, among other things, for the manufacture of surfactants, for example for personal care products and laundry and household cleaner detergents, and is also a feedstock for the manufacture of polyols as used in the production of polyurethane (PU) foams e.g. for the furniture and automotive industries. Added to this, the EO downstream product ethylene carbonate is an important precursor for lithium-ion batteries such as those used in electric cars. “With our project in Lülsdorf we also want to drive forward the prospective viability of electromobility,” explains Preussner. In the planned ethylene carbonate plant, the CO2 recovered from the EO production process will be used as a raw material, a factor that will improve the environmental acceptability of the project. The CO2 recovery plant will bind around 80 percent of the CO2 resulting from the production of EO, thus extensively eliminating its release into the atmosphere.
PCC currently anticipates an investment volume in excess of 500 million euros for the plant complex as a whole. Plant operations would give rise to around 120 new direct and permanent jobs in Lülsdorf. The location would also be attractive for the establishment of further converting companies. This could increase the number of jobs created to up to 200. Evonik site manager Dr. Arndt Selbach adds: “PCC is a reliable partner with which Evonik has worked successfully for a number of years. We have a common interest and very much support the project, as we see great opportunities accruing from it for the Lülsdorf site.”
PCC has international expertise and decades of experience in the construction and operation of facilities very similar to those planned. This also applies to the safe production of ethylene oxide, which, like many basic chemicals used in daily life, requires very careful handling. For several decades now, PCC has been using ethylene oxide in its chemical production facilities for the manufacture of surfactants and the production of polyols for PU foams. Part of the ethylene oxide made in Lülsdorf would be used to secure feedstock supplies for PCC’s chemical plants.
The PCC Group has more than 3,500 employees working in 18 countries. In 2018 PCC commissioned an environmentally compatible production plant in Iceland for the manufacture of silicon metal using electricity generated exclusively from renewable energy sources. Moreover, companies of the PCC Chemicals division have long been certified as meeting strict sustainability criteria. For example, since 2016, PCC’s largest chemicals subsidiary, PCC Rokita SA, has been listed in the RESPECT sustainability index of the Warsaw stock exchange in Poland.
Of particular importance for PCC SE is establishment of a relationship based on partnership and trust with people affected by the planned Lülsdorf site. For this reason, PCC has initiated an initiative based on transparent dialog with stakeholders in the location prior to any final decision being made. The company has also compiled a presentation of background information for local residents and all interested parties on a separate project website (www.pcc-luelsdorf.de).
PCC will make the final decision on the project and whether to go ahead with construction in Lülsdorf or at another location once it has completed this extensive, thorough test phase. In advance of this decision, a comprehensive authorization and approval procedure has already been put in train. As a first step, a so-called scoping conference involving the responsible authorities and other representatives of public interests has been planned for February 2020. This will serve as preparation for the approval process. In the event of a positive approvals outcome and following the final business-case decision on the project, plant construction could begin in 2021, with a likely completion time of three years.
This investment project is being developed by our wholly owned subsidiary PCC Integrated Chemistries GmbH, currently also based at the PCC Group headquarters in Duisburg.
PCC at a glance
Headquartered in Duisburg, Germany, PCC SE is an investor aligned to the long term. As a multi-investment enterprise, PCC has a diversified portfolio of Group companies primarily active in the production of chemical commodities, specialty chemicals and silicon metal. PCC was founded in 1993 by Waldemar Preussner, who, as its sole shareholder, is today Chairman of the Administrative Board of PCC SE.
With currently more than 3,500 employees in 18 countries, the PCC Group generated consolidated sales of some € 779.2 million in 2018 (sales as of September 30, 2019: € 583.2 million). The majority of these revenues, about 85 percent, was generated by the five segments of PCC’s Chemicals division – Polyols, Surfactants, Chlorine, Specialty Chemicals and Consumer Products. Capital expenditures in 2018 amounted to EUR 168.6 million, with much of the spend going on the construction of a silicon metal plant in Iceland and a DME plant in Russia, both commissioned in 2018. As of September 30, 2019, the total investment volume for the year to date amounted to another € 101.1 million.
The largest Group company is PCC Rokita SA, which has one of Poland’s biggest chemical plants near Wroclaw. Among other things, it is a major chlorine producer and Eastern Europe’s leading manufacturer of polyols.
PCC on the internet
Leiterin Marketing & Öffentlichkeitsarbeit
Moerser Str. 149
47198 Duisburg /Germany
Telefon: +49 (0)2066 20 19 35