An increasingly competitive sphere as well as a large choice of partners and customers are two of the chemicals industry’s greatest challenges. Specialised chemicals company BASF aims to lead in digital transformation in the chemicals industry to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of its processes in the African region.
“With digitally enabled products and services, our company is adding additional value for customers, with digital technology and data helping us to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of our processes,” BASF sales manager Dale Walker tells Engineering News.
The company aims to mitigate the competitive nature of the industry by adding additional value for customers through digitalisation. Adopting and driving the most important digital trends – sharing, connectivity, increased transparency, quantification and profiling, as well as mass customisation and data – will aid the company in leading the digital transformation in the chemicals industry.
Moreover, as a chemicals supplier, BASF faces the challenge of approaching the South African market to supply products and services amid the Covid-19 pandemic. All businesses need to adapt to the “new normal” and these businesses, including BASF, continue to seek ways of improving the services and value they provide for customers.
With the “new normal” being imposed globally by Covid-19, the BASF chemicals cluster team based in South Africa is learning to adapt, amid shorter and faster sales cycles than traditional sale cycles.
“This has allowed for radical transformation in the way that the company does business, making us more agile and adaptive,” says Walker.
BASF is using this time to engage with stakeholders and take part in varied discussions pertaining to carbon emissions, sustainability and lean, reliable supply chains. Walker notes that virtual engagements have brought BASF even closer to customers.
“The chemicals cluster team at BASF approaches the current global circumstances through intensified collaboration. “Many components of the various value chains are negatively affected – in varying degrees – but the insight we have gained over this period is that a business community has emerged. “This business community means working together and creating customer relationships that go beyond the sale of the product,” states Walker.
He adds that the company aims to contribute to a world that provides a viable future with an enhanced quality of life for everyone. BASF does so by creating chemistry for its customers and the greater society using the best available resources.
He notes that the key ingredients in the BASF portfolio are chemicals intermediates and monomers, which form the basis of several products in numerous industries.
“The contribution that BASF makes can be visualised as a tree, with the trunk representing the primary products used by the company. “Manufactured product families are used in raw materials in the downstream operations of the company that can be likened to the branches of the tree,” concludes Walker.