HOECHST’S JOINT VENTURE: Two leading global fiber concerns — Hoechst AG, Frankfurt, Germany, and RhOne-Poulenc, Coubevoie, France — said their Brazilian subsidiaries are setting up a joint venture in that country to produce polyester filament and nylon filament and staple fibers.
The venture is known as Fairway Filamentos SA. Equally owned by Hoechst de Brasil and Rhodia SA, it is scheduled to begin operations July 1, using Hoechst’s production sites in Osasco and Santo Andre, and Rhodia’s plants in Sao Bernardo and Jacarei, all of which are in the state of Sao Paulo.
Dirk Blaesing, who headed Hoechst’s Brazilian operation, is chief executive officer of the joint venture, while Jean Louis Bourdon, who oversaw Rhodia’s business, is Fairway’s deputy general. Both report to William A. Harris, head of Hoechst AG’s worldwide fibers business.
Hoechst said the companies are investing nearly $95 million over the next three years to increase production capacities, enhance manufacturing technologies, develop new products and improve product lines.
After the expansion, Hoechst said, it expects annual sales of the joint venture to be about $400 million. Fairway will employ about 3,100, an equal number from each partner.
Hoechst said after the expansion is complete, the combined annual production for nylon staple and filament should be about 110 million pounds, and for polyester filament, about 112 million pounds.