Albermale Plans R&D Center in Korea


Specialty chemical company Albermale Corporation (ALB) announced the opening of a new Research and Operations Center (ROC) in its Yeosu facility in South Korea. The facility currently manufactures lab-scale and pilot-scale quantities of single site catalysts and components used in the polymer industry by deploying the company’s ActivCat and Advantage technologies

The state-of-the-art ROC will boast new analytical and polymerization labs to conduct research on the single site catalysts and components used in the polymer industry and enhance production. The ROC will also ensure faster development of new catalysts and considerably reduce time-to-market for the products. Moreover, the ROC is expected to create more businesses throughout Asia Pacific for Albemarle's commercial plant slated to be operational at the Yeosu site by late 2012.

The company’s board also approved an expansion program at the Yeosu facility to produce Albemarle's PureGrowth products. The expansion is expected to be completed in 2013. The products are used in metal organic chemical vapor deposition (:MOCVD), a process used to manufacture chips for semiconductors, LEDs, and optoelectronic devices.

Albemarle Corporation, is a leading global developer, manufacturer and marketer of highly engineered specialty chemicals for consumer electronics, petroleum refining, utilities, packaging, construction, automotive/transportation, pharmaceuticals, crop protection, food-safety and custom chemistry services.

Last month, Albermale released its second quarter 2012 results. The company’s earnings (excluding one-time charges) came in at $1.24 per share exceeding the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny. After including one-time charges of 82 cents per share, earnings came in at 42 cents compared with $1.23 in the year-ago quarter. Revenue for the quarter plunged 7.7% to $684.9 million compared with $742.1 million in the second quarter of 2011.

The company, which competes with Chemtura Corporation (CHMT) maintains a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a short-term (1 to 3 months) Hold rating. We currently have a long-term Neutral recommendation on the shares of Albermale.

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