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Chemicals

Active pharmaceutical ingredients pilot plant marks important step for SA industry

By: Keith Campbell     24th November 2017 A pilot plant for the manufacture of generic active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) has been officially opened in Pretoria. A R50-million joint project between local company CPT Pharma (CPT standing for Chemical Process Technologies), the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the... 

Sasol’s new strategy shuns GTL as specialty chemicals emerge as key growth driver

By: Terence Creamer     23rd November 2017 Chemicals and energy group Sasol is preparing to sell several assets, including its Canadian shale gas assets, following an overhaul of its corporate strategy, which eschews any further greenfield gas-to-liquids (GTL) investments in favour of smaller acquisitions and projects of between... 

Sasol’s new strategy shuns GTL as specialty chemicals emerge as key growth driver
Photo by Duane Daws
Sasol joint CEOs Bongani Nqwababa and Stephen Cornell

South African nuclear body shuts down key unit because of compliance failure

By: Keith Campbell     22nd November 2017 The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) has executed an immediate shut down of its NTP Radiochemical Facility, because of non-compliance with licensing conditions. NTP produces radioisotopes for both industrial and an especially medical purposes, and many cancer and other patients in... 

South African nuclear body shuts down key unit because of compliance failure
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
An aerial view of Necsa’s complex at Pelindaba

Omnia expects higher interim earnings

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th November 2017 Local chemicals company Omnia expects to report a 26.1% to 31.1% year-on-year increase in earnings a share to between 414.78c and 431.23c, for the six months to September 30. Headline earnings a share are forecast to increase by 28.8% to 33.8% to between 412c and 428c. 

Foskor still contesting Competition Tribunal price findings

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     14th November 2017 In response to earlier reports that Foskor had been prevented from setting the domestic phosphoric acid price at a level higher than the international price by the Competition Tribunal, the phosphates and phosphoric acid producer tells Engineering News Online that it is still in talks to contest... 

IEA lists South Africa as possible hub for production of ‘green’ hydrogen-rich chemicals, fuels

By: Terence Creamer     14th November 2017 A new International Energy Agency (IEA) report lists South Africa, together with a handful of other territories, as having the potential to tap its abundant solar and wind resources to produce “green” hydrogen-rich chemicals and fuels, such as ammonia and methanol. The insight paper, titled... 

IEA lists South Africa as possible hub for production of ‘green’ hydrogen-rich chemicals, fuels

Important step for local pharmaceutical industry as key pilot plant launched

By: Keith Campbell     10th November 2017 A pilot plant for the manufacture of generic active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) was officially opened in Pretoria on Friday. A R50-million joint project between local company CPT Pharma (CPT standing for Chemical Process Technologies), the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the... 

Omnia welcomes High Court finding on Foskor litigation

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     8th November 2017 The Pretoria High Court has dismissed phosphates and phosphoric acid producer Foskor’s appeal against chemical manufacturing company Omnia, with costs. Omnia on Wednesday said that the ongoing legal dispute, which started in 2014, was based on Foskor’s position as the sole producer of phosphoric... 

AECI acquires Imperial’s Schirm in R1.8bn deal

By: Natasha Odendaal     8th November 2017 AECI’s wholly-owned subsidiary AECI Mauritius has reached agreement to acquire Imperial Chemical Logistics’ (ICL’s) wholly-owned contract agrochemical and fine chemical manufacturing subsidiary Schirm for €110.5-million, or R1.8-billion. The deal forms part of AECI’s international expansion... 

AECI acquires Imperial’s Schirm in R1.8bn deal
Photo by Duane Daws
AECI CEO Mark Dytor

First synthetic Blue Crude plant to start operation in 2020

     27th October 2017 The mass production of the environment-friendly synthetic crude oil substitute Blue Crude will become a reality from 2020, says research and development company Sunfire.  

First synthetic Blue Crude plant to start operation in 2020
GOING BLUE Refineries can use Blue Crude as a raw material for waxes, and petrol, diesel, kerosene and even rocket fuel

Initiatives aim to reduce carbon footprint and production costs

By: Simone Liedtke     27th October 2017 Current initiatives in the global synthetic fuels (synfuels) industry are focussing on using coal feedstock more efficiently to reduce operational and capital costs of production, states chemicals process engineering company Holland and Hausberger CEO Dr Brendon Hausberger. 

Initiatives aim to  reduce carbon footprint and production costs
GENERAL PUBLIC PERCEPTION The general public perception is that coal is a dirty and undesirable environment-costly option

Positive prospects for synfuels sector with focus on efficient maintenance

By: Simone Liedtke     27th October 2017 Welding and construction equipment-related supplier Renttech South Africa (SA) sees prospects for the synfuels industry improving, as the recent depressed period - owing to the decline globally in hydrocarbon fuel prices - has seen the petrochemicals industry focusing on efficient maintenance,... 

Positive prospects for synfuels sector with focus on efficient maintenance
TO GROW AND PROSPER The country needs to have an efficient, cost-competitive local petrochemicals industry

Financial results exhibit value-based growth

     27th October 2017 In the 2017 financial year, energy and chemicals company Sasol’s results portrayed value-based growth on a robust foundation owing to a strong business performance across most of the value chain. 

Financial results exhibit value-based growth
STRONG PERFORMANCE The company’s strong cost performance was achieved by the sustainable delivery of its Business Performance Enhancement Programme and Response Plan

Rolfes appoints new CEO

By: Anine Kilian     16th October 2017 Lizette Lynch has resigned as CEO of JSE-listed Rolfes and will be succeeded by current acting CFO Richard Buttle. The process of appointing a new permanent CFO has commenced. Buttle will retain the role of acting group CFO while a suitable successor is identified. 

SA weighs market opportunities as utility-scale battery storage prospects improve

By: Mia Breytenbach     13th October 2017 Following the release of an energy storage techno-economic study ‘The South Africa Energy Storage Technology and Market Assessment’, advocating that South Africa requires market preparation to take advantage of growth opportunities in the stationary and mobility value chains of energy storage,... 

SA weighs market opportunities as utility-scale  battery storage prospects improve

Chamber helps Italian companies prosper in S Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     13th October 2017 Networking events and exhibitions are integral to fostering partnerships between Italian and South African companies, says Italian-South African Chamber of Trade and Industries secretary general Mariagrazia Biancospino. 

Tribunal approves settlement agreements with two chemicals companies

By: Anine Kilian     9th October 2017 The Competition Tribunal has approved settlement agreements between the Competition Commission and Investchem and Akulu Marchon/Chemical Initiatives (CI), with regard to price fixing and dividing of markets for key chemical input materials used to make detergents, cosmetics and toiletries. Akulu... 

Sasol changes funding option to settle old BEE scheme debt

By: African News Agency      9th October 2017 Sasol on Monday announced that it would explore different funding options to settle the financing obligations of its failed broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) ownership structure. Sasol said it will no longer pursue the preferred funding option of issuing up to 43-million ordinary... 

Exhibition marks firm’s international re-entry

By: Simone Liedtke     6th October 2017 Protective workwear manufacturer Sweet-Orr is set to exhibit at this year’s A+A Trade Show exhibition – which is an important trade forum for safety, security and health at work – from October 17 to 20 in Dusseldorf, Germany. 

Exhibition marks firm’s  international re-entry
CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT Sweet Orr benchmarks its continuous improvement process in order to maintain national and international quality standards

SA Competition Commission drops cancer drugs investigation against Aspen

By: African News Agency      4th October 2017 The Competition Commission on Wednesday dropped its investigation into allegations that pharmaceutical companies, Aspen Pharmacare Holdings and Equity Pharma, were involved in excessive pricing. The Commission had in June initiated three investigations against both companies for suspected abuse... 

Small businesses remain optimistic, despite volatility and uncertainties

By: Mia Breytenbach     29th September 2017 Despite economic volatility, South African small business owners remain optimistic and are actively pursuing growth, according to research from cloud based accounting software company Xero.   The research report, titled ‘State of South African Small Businesses’ surveys the challenges facing the... 

Small businesses remain optimistic,  despite volatility and uncertainties
Photo by Bloomberg
HELPING HAND Some small business owners want the government to provide more funding and some believe government should grant tax breaks for their business

Necsa plans to restart nuclear pebble-fuel production

By: Keith Campbell     22nd September 2017 The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) is reactivating its ability to manufacture nuclear pebble fuel, originally created to support South Africa's Pebble Bed Modular Reactor (PBMR) programme. The corporation is also looking for a strategic equity partner for its speciality... 

Sasol proposes new R21bn BBBEE ownership transaction 

By: Anine Kilian     20th September 2017 JSE-listed Sasol on Wednesday announced a proposed new R21-billion broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) ownership transaction, Sasol Khanyisa, which will replace Sasol’s debt-ridden Sasol Inzalo fund, which expires in June 2018. When Sasol Inzalo lapses, it will not be able to... 

Sasol proposes new R21bn BBBEE ownership transaction
Sasol joint president and CEO Stephen Cornell talks about the lessons learned from the Sasol Inzalo transaction and how the proposed new Sasol Khanyisa transaction will be different. Video and editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Adcock Ingram acquires medical products company Genop

By: Schalk Burger     12th September 2017 JSE-listed pharmaceutical company Adcock Ingram has acquired 100% of local medical instrument and pharmaceutical company Genop for an undisclosed amount. Genop is a specialised instrument, surgical and pharmaceutical products company focused on the ophthalmic, optometry, skincare, aesthetic and... 

Range of radar level transmitters extended

     1st September 2017 Process instrumentation solutions supplier Krohne has added six new 24 GHz and 80 GHz transmitters to its Optiwave series of frequency-modulated continuous-wave (FMCW) radar level transmitters, which are aimed at liquid and solid applications in a range of industries. 

Range of radar level transmitters extended
RADAR LEVEL MEASUREMENT Each device has a particular target area of application

Servest acquires stake in ICT services company

By: Mia Breytenbach     1st September 2017 International facilities management provider Servest has partnered with investment company Bottega InvestCo in the acquisition of integrated information and communications technology (ICT) services company Getronics. The transaction, which is supported by specialist banking and asset management... 

Servest acquires stake in ICT services company
Photo by Duane Daws
ENABLING TRANSACTION The transaction, will enable Servest to provide a seamless facility management and mobile technology offering for its growing client base

Study urges South Africa to find energy storage niche

By: Mia Breytenbach     1st September 2017 With energy storage considered to be the “new wave” in the energy sector and increasingly becoming a reality, South Africa needs to prepare itself if it wishes to take advantage of the energy storage growth opportunities within the energy storage stationary value chain and the mobility value... 

Company showcasing opportunities that exist for local manufacturers

By: Ilan Solomons     1st September 2017 South African amenities manufacturing company The Bespoke Amenities Company (TBAC) is striving to be an example of what is possible, if local companies are willing to invest in local manufacturing capabilities, states TBAC MD Bruce Turner. The company was registered in 2012 and started trading in... 

Company showcasing opportunities  that exist for local manufacturers
Photo by Duane Daws
FINDING A GOOD MIX The company wants to create as many jobs as possible by using labour intensive processes with automated applications kept to a minimum

Necsa says second reactor would strengthen Pelindaba’s global nuclear medicine position

By: Keith Campbell     1st September 2017 The worldwide nuclear medicine market in 2016 was worth more than $11-billion and is projected to be worth almost $20-billion by 2021. The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa), through its use of its SAFARI-1 research reactor and its subsidiary company NTP Radioisotopes, is one of... 

Necsa says second reactor would strengthen Pelindaba’s global nuclear medicine position

Ascendis appoints COO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      31st August 2017 JSE-listed Ascendis Health has appointed Thomas Thomsen COO. Thomsen is based in the UK and will primarily be responsible for the company’s European operations. 

Adcock Ingram maintains upward earnings trajectory in FY17

By: Natasha Odendaal     25th August 2017 The 2017 financial results of “re-engineered” pharmaceuticals giant Adcock Ingram show continued recovery and positive performance three years after the group embarked on a significant restructure to turn around its fortunes. Adcock’s “satisfying trading performance and exceptional increase in... 

Auditors trained to assess hazardous materials transport

By: Dylan Slater     25th August 2017 South African chemical industry representative organisation the Chemical and Allied Industries’ Association (CAIA) is embarking on the training of “much-needed” auditors to assess the safety of transporting hazardous materials.  

Cost-effective fire suppression product has desired impact

By: Simone Liedtke     25th August 2017 Fire-protection equipment supplier Fire Security and Techniques (FST) has just started supplying the FST Fire Orb – which supresses fires – to those living in informal settlements to mitigate the damage caused by a fire incident. 

Innovative surfactants enhance firefighting

By: Simone Liedtke     25th August 2017 Owing to ongoing drought conditions and a more intense fire season expected in South Africa, environmental solutions company I-CAT has developed innovative surfactants to boost the fire-extinguishing and dust-suppression capability and effectiveness of water. 

Innovative surfactants  enhance firefighting
LOURENS JANSEN VAN RENSBURG iFire is an ideal water-treatment agent to improve the wetting capability of water which, in turn, enhances its firefighting capability

Passive fire protection integral element of safety

By: Simone Liedtke     25th August 2017 With passive fire-safety becoming increasingly important in new buildings and renovation work, South Africa-based sealant and adhesive supplier Den Braven says such fire protection systems need to ensure that a fire is contained within specified fire compartments. 

Passive fire protection integral element of safety
FIREPROTECT RANGE The Den Braven FireProtect range, which was launched last year, consists of products that offer a complete solution to all types of expansion joints

Sasol review may result in sale or closure of assets, but no ‘fire sale’  

By: Terence Creamer     21st August 2017 Chemicals and energy group Sasol has announced that an asset-review process is under way that could result in the sale, closure or growth of certain assets. However, the JSE-listed company has also stressed that there will be no “fire sale”. Joint president and CEO Bongani Nqwababa reports that... 

Sasol review may result in sale or closure of assets, but no ‘fire sale’
Sasol joint president and CEO Bongani Nqwababa speaks to Terence Creamer about the group's results, asset review, tax shock and strategic outlook. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd & Duane Daws. Recorded: 21.8.2017

Sasol turns to courts after Sars slaps it with tax bills worth R12.8bn 

By: Terence Creamer     21st August 2017 JSE-listed energy and chemicals group Sasol will approach the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) to resolve a tax dispute with the South African Revenue Service (Sars), which has slapped it with assessments for outstanding tax liabilities and penalties worth R12.8-billion. The company made a... 

Sasol turns to courts after Sars slaps it with tax bills worth R12.8bn
Sasol CFO Paul Victor on the group's tax dispute with the South African Revenue Service. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 21.8.2017
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