When the news broke in November 2009 that both Dow and BASF were looking to sell their styrene assets, the race to find buyers was on. Now, seven months later, BASF still owns its assets, saying that they are performing well and that they are in no hurry to sell. Dow, however, recently closed the sale of its Styron unit to global private investment firm Bain Capital Partners. Now a standalone company, Styron is setting out to maintain its leading position in latex and polystyrene production. Brandi Schuster spoke with Paul Moyer, Styron's vice president for plastics, about the brand-new company's outlook, its continuing ties with Dow and its strategy for remaining competitive.
CHEManager Europe: Mr. Moyer, Dow has a 7.5% equity position in Styron; long-term supply, service and purchase agreements have also been made. To what extent do you plan on using the Dow name to leverage Styron?
P. Moyer: We'll continue to have a strong relationship with Dow; many of our plants are within Dow sites, and the company will also continue to provide many services to Styron - and vice versa. We also have our strong heritage from Dow, from the customer services we offer, to our focus on innovation and operational excellence. But now, instead of being one of many inside Dow, the products we offer now take center stage. We now have a much sharper focus on the customers we serve. ...