BRB International opened its new viscosity index improver plant in Singapore through Viscotech Asia Pte., its joint venture with Ban Guan Chemical.
The Dutch lube additives supplier formed BRB Viscotech Asia as a way to expand in the region while freeing capacity at the companys existing viscosity modifier plant in Duisburg, Germany. BRB owns 65 percent of the joint venture and Ban Guan, a subsidiary of Singaporean engineering firm Malayan Daching Co., owns the other 35 percent.
For our Lube oil Additives and Chemicals division, this is the first production joint venture in Asia and it offers the opportunity for BRB to increase its flexibility in supply and a basis for future expansion, whilst being closer to our growing Asian customer base, BRB said in a company statement.
The plant will manufacture liquid viscosity modifiers marketed under the Viscotech brand. Viscosity modifiers are used in multi-grade engine oils, gear oils, automatic transmission fluids, greases and various hydraulic fluids.
The production capacity of the facility in Singapore is equivalent to the Viscotech GmbH plant in Germany, Roger Dohmen, vice president for BRBs lubricant, additives and chemicals unit, said in an email, without disclosing specific numbers.
Dohmen said the plants location in Singapore offers easy access to Asian markets and a good environment for quality manufacturing. Singapore is a hub and offers great access to Southeast Asia and China. Also the skill of the local workforce is among the highest in the world, and the business culture is transparent and highly supportive to international companies.
Viscotech Asia is BRBs first plant in Asia-Pacific, and Dohmen said the company hopes to form partnerships in the region to continue expanding local production.
We are still small in China, so naturally that country offers the greatest growth potential… Also, our products stand out in cold weather, which is ideal for Northern China, Dohmen explained. Other than that, we see increased demand for quality products in Thailand and Taiwan. Also Vietnam has our focus as the increase in quality lubes is happening very fast there, and customers are looking for robust performance.
BRB supplies other types of lubricant additives, including pour-point depressants, total base number boosters and additive packages for gear oils, automatic transmission fluids and hydraulic fluids, as well as greases, specialty silicone products and some finished lubricants.
The joint venture with Ban Guan will probably produce some of those in the future, Dohmen said in a past article.