Dow Updates: Expands ENLIGHT Production in Germany, Wins $2.2 Billion in Damages

by Trefis Team
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The Dow Chemical Company
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The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE:DOW) is setting up a new production facility in Germany to make ENLIGHT polyolefin encapsulant films. [1] The company also announced the introduction of its technology platform for RHOPLEX ECONEXT acrylic binders which will help it manufacture non-woven products with reduced levels of formaldehyde. [2] In another event, Dow Chemical won $2.2 billion in damages against Kuwait’s Petrochemicals Industries (PIC) in an international arbitration involving the joint venture between the two companies.

We currently have a Trefis price estimate of $32 for Dow Chemical, which is in line with the market price.

See our full analysis of the Dow Chemical stock here

Significant Opportunity

ENLIGHT films provide improved electrical performance and greater module stability compared to traditional encapsulants like EVA-based products. The company’s testing shows that modules made from EVA-based products lose efficiency after 2,000 hours of use, whereas modules made from ENLIGHT films retained efficiency even after 10,000 hours. With this production facility, Dow hopes to cash in on the increased demand for solar panels, whose sales are expected to grow by 25% annually over the next few years. Construction for the production facility will be complete by late 2012. [1] Performance plastics and performance materials together contribute 60% to Dow’s stock value, by our estimates.

Coming to RHOPLEX ECONEXT, the technology will help the company manufacture products for the North American hygiene and medical market. The medical industry is sensitive to the levels of formaldehyde, and thus the inception of this technology platform allows Dow to manufacture end-use non-woven products that are compliant with the stringent industry standards. The technology was first introduced in Europe and has even received an innovation award from EDANA, a European nonwovens trade association. [2]

Dow Chemical Awarded $2.2 billion in Damages

Dow Chemical has won $2.2 billion in damages as compensation from Kuwait’s state-owned Petrochemicals Industries Co (PIC), after the latter backed out from the joint venture. As part of the deal, the two companies were to form a joint venture, K-Dow, under which PIC were to pay $7.5 billion to Dow. [3] The ruling comes as a favorable boost to Dow, as it will help the company reduce its debt level, which currently stands at more than $22 billion.

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Notes:
  1. Dow to construct ENLIGHT™ Polyolefin Encapsulant Film plant in Schkopau, plastemart.com, June 8,2012 [] []
  2. Dow Launches Nonwovens Technology Platform for RHOPLEX™ ECONEXT™ Acrylic Binders for North American Market, eon.businesswire.com, June 5, 2012 [] []
  3. Dow Chemical wins $2.2bn in Kuwait damages, ft.com, May 24, 2012 []
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