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Celanese

Celanese

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Celanese Corporation is a Fortune 500
Fortune 500
The Fortune 500 is an annual list compiled and published by Fortune magazine that ranks the top 500 U.S. closely held and public corporations as ranked by their gross revenue after adjustments made by Fortune to exclude the impact of excise taxes companies collect. The list includes publicly and...

 global technology and specialty materials company with its headquarters in Dallas
Dallas, Texas
Dallas is the third-largest city in Texas and the ninth-largest in the United States. The Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex is the largest metropolitan area in the South and fourth-largest metropolitan area in the United States...

, Texas
Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

. The company is a leading producer of acetyl
Acetyl
In organic chemistry, acetyl is a functional group, the acyl with chemical formula COCH3. It is sometimes represented by the symbol Ac . The acetyl group contains a methyl group single-bonded to a carbonyl...

 products, which are intermediate chemicals for nearly all major industries, and is the world's largest producer of vinyl acetate monomer (VAM).

Celanese's operations are primarily located in North America, Europe, and Asia. Its largest plant is in the Clear Lake (Galveston Bay)
Clear Lake (Galveston Bay)
Clear Lake is a brackish lake located near Houston, Texas, USA in Harris County. The lake feeds Galveston Bay. It is bordered by Houston , Pasadena, League City, Clear Lake Shores, Taylor Lake Village, and El Lago, Texas...

 area of Pasadena
Pasadena, Texas
Pasadena is a city in the U.S. state of Texas within the metropolitan area. It is the second-largest city in Harris County, 17th-largest in Texas, and 162nd largest in the United States. The area was founded in 1893 by John H. Burnett of Galveston....

, Texas
Texas
Texas is the second largest U.S. state by both area and population, and the largest state by area in the contiguous United States.The name, based on the Caddo word "Tejas" meaning "friends" or "allies", was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in...

, USA the home to the world’s largest acetic acid
Acetic acid
Acetic acid is an organic compound with the chemical formula CH3CO2H . It is a colourless liquid that when undiluted is also called glacial acetic acid. Acetic acid is the main component of vinegar , and has a distinctive sour taste and pungent smell...

 plant. In 2010, Celanese reported net sales of $5.92 billion.

History


In 1918, the American Cellulose & Chemical Manufacturing Company was founded in New York
New York
New York is a state in the Northeastern region of the United States. It is the nation's third most populous state. New York is bordered by New Jersey and Pennsylvania to the south, and by Connecticut, Massachusetts and Vermont to the east...

 by Camille Dreyfus.

A Celanese plant was located at Amcelle, Maryland
Amcelle, Maryland
Amcelle is an unincorporated community in Allegany County, Maryland, United States....

 between Cumberland
Cumberland, Maryland
Cumberland is a city in the far western, Appalachian portion of Maryland, United States. It is the county seat of Allegany County, and the primary city of the Cumberland, MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area. At the 2010 census, the city had a population of 20,859, and the metropolitan area had a...

 and Cresaptown
Cresaptown, Maryland
Cresaptown is a community located in Allegany County, Maryland, United States of America. It is an unincorporated community which, for United States Census Bureau purposes, is united with Bel Air to form the census-designated place of Cresaptown-Bel Air. Cresaptown's post office was established...

. The plant was served by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad
Baltimore and Ohio Railroad
The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad was one of the oldest railroads in the United States and the first common carrier railroad. It came into being mostly because the city of Baltimore wanted to compete with the newly constructed Erie Canal and another canal being proposed by Pennsylvania, which...

 (B&O), and was a major consumer of coal
Coal
Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock usually occurring in rock strata in layers or veins called coal beds or coal seams. The harder forms, such as anthracite coal, can be regarded as metamorphic rock because of later exposure to elevated temperature and pressure...

. It received bulk shipments of industrial chemicals and raw cotton
Cotton
Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber that grows in a boll, or protective capsule, around the seeds of cotton plants of the genus Gossypium. The fiber is almost pure cellulose. The botanical purpose of cotton fiber is to aid in seed dispersal....

 fiber, and shipped out its fabric products in quantity. The B&O also provided passenger service to the plant, for Celanese workers. The plant had its own extensive networks of rail lines on the property. It became a major employer in Allegany County
Allegany County, Maryland
Allegany County is a county located in the northwestern part of the US state of Maryland. It is part of the Cumberland, MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of 2010, the population was 75,087. Its county seat is Cumberland...

, and most families in the area have one or more relatives that worked for the plant at its peak. At one time, 13,000 employees worked there.

The American Cellulose and Chemical Manufacturing Co. Ltd plant was set up during World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 to produce cheaper fabric for airplane manufacturing. The plant location was chosen inland to protect against Zeppelin
Zeppelin
A Zeppelin is a type of rigid airship pioneered by the German Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin in the early 20th century. It was based on designs he had outlined in 1874 and detailed in 1893. His plans were reviewed by committee in 1894 and patented in the United States on 14 March 1899...

 attacks. It was also situated in proximity to a ready source of water at the Potomac River
Potomac River
The Potomac River flows into the Chesapeake Bay, located along the mid-Atlantic coast of the United States. The river is approximately long, with a drainage area of about 14,700 square miles...

, and easy access to coal supplies and railroad lines. After a series of delays, actual production began in 1924 with a series of cellulose acetate
Cellulose acetate
Cellulose acetate , first prepared in 1865, is the acetate ester of cellulose. Cellulose acetate is used as a film base in photography, as a component in some adhesives, and as a frame material for eyeglasses; it is also used as a synthetic fiber and in the manufacture of cigarette filters and...

 commercial fabrics and yarns intended as alternatives to silk
Silk
Silk is a natural protein fiber, some forms of which can be woven into textiles. The best-known type of silk is obtained from the cocoons of the larvae of the mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori reared in captivity...

. The plant was closed in 1983, and was later torn down to provide a space for a new state prison.

In 1927, the American Cellulose & Chemical Manufacturing Company changed its name to Celanese Corporation of America. In 1986, its pharmaceutical business was spun off as Celgene
Celgene
Celgene Corporation is a manufacturer of drug therapies for cancer and inflammatory disorders. It is incorporated in Delaware and headquartered in Summit, New Jersey...

, and, in 1987, Celanese Corporation was acquired by Hoechst
Hoechst AG
Hoechst AG was a German chemicals then life-sciences company that became Aventis Deutschland after its merger with France's Rhône-Poulenc S.A. in 1999...

 and merged with its American subsidiary, American Hoechst, to form Hoechst Celanese Corporation.

In 1998, Hoechst combined most of its industrial chemical operations in a new company, Celanese AG, and, in 1999, Hoechst spun off Celanese AG as a publicly-traded, German corporation, traded on both the Frankfurt and New York stock exchanges
Cross Listing
Cross listing of shares is when a firm lists its equity shares on one or more foreign stock exchange in addition to its domestic exchange. Examples include: American Depository Receipt , European Depositary Receipt , International Depositary Receipt and Global Registered Shares .Generally such a...

.

On 16 December 2003, the U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group
Blackstone Group
The Blackstone Group L.P. is an American-based alternative asset management and financial services company that specializes in private equity, real estate, and credit and marketable alternative investment strategies, as well as financial advisory services, such as mergers and acquisitions ,...

 announced a takeover offer for Celanese, after two years of wooing management. Shareholders formally approved the offer from Blackstone on 16 June 2004, and Blackstone completed the acquisition of Celanese AG. The company was delisted from the New York Stock Exchange
New York Stock Exchange
The New York Stock Exchange is a stock exchange located at 11 Wall Street in Lower Manhattan, New York City, USA. It is by far the world's largest stock exchange by market capitalization of its listed companies at 13.39 trillion as of Dec 2010...

, and Blackstone changes its name to Celanese Corporation. Under Blackstone, a number of streamlining initiatives were undertaken, and several acquisitions were made.

On 21, January 2005, Celanese Corporation conducted an initial public offering
Initial public offering
An initial public offering or stock market launch, is the first sale of stock by a private company to the public. It can be used by either small or large companies to raise expansion capital and become publicly traded enterprises...

 and became a publicly-traded corporation traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "CE". When Blackstone sold the last of its shares in 2007, it had made five times what it had invested and it, and its co-investors collected a $2.9 billion profit.

Acetyl Intermediates


Acetyl Intermediates is Celanese's largest segment, with a product range consisting of basic chemicals such as acetic acid
Acetic acid
Acetic acid is an organic compound with the chemical formula CH3CO2H . It is a colourless liquid that when undiluted is also called glacial acetic acid. Acetic acid is the main component of vinegar , and has a distinctive sour taste and pungent smell...

, acetic anhydride
Acetic anhydride
Acetic anhydride, or ethanoic anhydride, is the chemical compound with the formula 2O. Commonly abbreviated Ac2O, it is the simplest isolatable acid anhydride and is a widely used reagent in organic synthesis...

, and vinyl acetate
Vinyl acetate
Vinyl acetate is an organic compound with the formula CH3COOCH=CH2. A colorless liquid with a pungent odor, it is the precursor to polyvinyl acetate, an important polymer in industry.-Production:...

. Customers of Acetyl Intermediates and Industrial Specialties are in the chemical, paint and coatings, construction, and adhesive industries for polymerization
Polymerization
In polymer chemistry, polymerization is a process of reacting monomer molecules together in a chemical reaction to form three-dimensional networks or polymer chains...

.

Advanced Engineered Materials


Advanced Engineered Materials offers plastic
Plastic
A plastic material is any of a wide range of synthetic or semi-synthetic organic solids used in the manufacture of industrial products. Plastics are typically polymers of high molecular mass, and may contain other substances to improve performance and/or reduce production costs...

 polymers to customers in the automotive, electronics, telecommunications, and medical industries. Major products include: engineered plastics for fuel system components (provided by Ticona
Ticona
Ticona is an international manufacturer of engineering polymers. The company's head office is located at the Ticona/Celanese-Plant in Florence, Kentucky, USA, since 2005.-Company history:...

, the engineering polymer business of Celanese), conveyor belts, electronics, safety systems, emissions filtration, and fluid handling.

Consumer Specialities


The food ingredients business Nutrinova
Nutrinova
Nutrinova is a global manufacturer of food constituents. It was formerly known as Hoechst until 1997 when it was taken over by Celanese and adopted its current name.The company is headquartered in Frankfurt, Germany. It is a wholly owned affiliate of Celanese....

 produces the high intensity sweetener Sunett (acesulfame K
Acesulfame potassium
Acesulfame potassium is a calorie-free artificial sweetener, also known as Acesulfame K or Ace K , and marketed under the trade names Sunett and Sweet One. In the European Union, it is known under the E number E950...

), the preservative
Preservative
A preservative is a naturally occurring or synthetically produced substance that is added to products such as foods, pharmaceuticals, paints, biological samples, wood, etc. to prevent decomposition by microbial growth or by undesirable chemical changes....

s Nutrinova potassium sorbate and sorbic acid
Sorbic acid
Sorbic acid, or 2,4-hexadienoic acid, is a natural organic compound used as a food preservative. It has the chemical formula C6H8O2. It is a colourless solid that is slightly soluble in water and sublimes readily...

, and other food ingredients. Major end-use markets include beverages, confections, baked goods, and dairy products.

Celanese is one of the world's largest producers of cellulose acetate
Cellulose acetate
Cellulose acetate , first prepared in 1865, is the acetate ester of cellulose. Cellulose acetate is used as a film base in photography, as a component in some adhesives, and as a frame material for eyeglasses; it is also used as a synthetic fiber and in the manufacture of cigarette filters and...

 tow
Tow
In the composites industry, a tow is an untwisted bundle of continuous filaments, and it refers to man-made fibres, particularly carbon fibres ....

. Acetate products are primarily used in cigarette filters, as well as in the production of fashion apparel and linings
Lining (sewing)
In sewing and tailoring, a lining is an inner layer of fabric, fur, or other material inserted into clothing, hats, luggage, curtains, handbags and similar items....

, filtered products.

Industrial Specialties


Industrial Specialties using the feedstock from acetyl intermediates manufactures polymer and emulsions, such as polyvinyl acetate
Polyvinyl acetate
Polyvinyl acetate, PVA, PVAc, poly, is a rubbery synthetic polymer with the formula n. It belongs to the polyvinyl esters family with the general formula -[RCOOCHCH2]-...

 emulsions, and specialty chemicals as ethylene vinyl acetate. Major end-use markets include polyvinyl alcohol
Polyvinyl alcohol
Polyvinyl alcohol is a water-soluble synthetic polymer .-Properties:...

producers, paper, mortar and gypsum, textiles, paints, coatings, adhesives manufacturers.

External links