Borealis inaugurates international Innovation Headquarters in Linz, Austria
- EUR 50 million Innovation Headquarters project completed
- International know-how, cutting-edge technology, and close cooperation with the customers allows for a faster and customised development of products for the future
- New Innovation Headquarters gives the momentum for the business location Upper Austria
On November 20, 2009, Borealis, a leading provider of chemical and innovative plastics solutions, will inaugurate its international Innovation Headquarters in Linz, Austria. This event is the culmination of approximately one and a half years of construction and a total investment volume of EUR 50 million. About 350 international Borealis employees from over 30 countries, working in research and product development as well as in marketing and sales, are developing plastic materials of the future for Borealis’ global customers and housed in the Innovation Headquarters. 100 new employees in research and development complement the existing approx. 1,100 employees who are currently working for Borealis in Linz.
“With a total investment of EUR 50 million in the global Innovation Headquarters we are giving momentum for the plastics location Upper Austria”, says Gerhard Roiss, Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board of OMV and Chairman of the Borealis Supervisory Board. “Plastics are the material of the future, and with a global production volume of 245 million tonnes, it is a real growth sector. In Linz, we will now develop new plastic solutions for customers all over the world. By establishing the new and already well-accepted Plastics Engineering programme at Johannes Kepler University in Linz, we will be able to cover the growing demand for well-trained specialists and scientists also in the future. With this new programme, Linz will be able to position itself as an attractive location for international experts in the field of research and development.”
State-of-the-art Innovation Headquarters
The first construction stage with the completion of the application hall was finalised this summer. The five-story building accommodates state-of-the-art equipment for processing plastics in applications such as pipe, film and injection moulding, as well as the relevant analysis and laboratory equipment.
A new high-tech polymerisation laboratory has been built adjacent to the application hall. This is being used to produce batch samples of new grades that are specifically tailored to the customer’s needs. With this proximity, samples can be tested and analysed in the adjoining labs before being produced on a larger scale in pilot or production plants.
Borealis’ mission of Value Creation through Innovation was the key idea during the entire construction process of the Innovation Headquarters. The new office building meets the latest architectural standards: open-space offices and well appointed communication centres support the exchange amongst employees, as well as with management and customers.
Promoting innovation capabilities
“Our international Innovation Headquarters in Linz strengthens our leadership position as a strong partner in innovation, with comprehensive know-how in the development of value creating solutions”, explains Mark Garrett, Borealis Chief Executive. “In Linz, we offer our customers direct access to cutting-edge plastic processing equipment, the expertise of international specialists and scientists, and years of experience in the field of process and product development, at one single site.”
“Our success and the success of our customers depend directly on our ability to introduce new and innovative products to the market faster and to adapt them specifically to our customers’ requirements”, says Alfred Stern, Senior Vice President Innovation & Technology. “The Innovation Headquarters in Linz creates the best possible foundation for this. Experts from all business areas are able to cooperate with customers and researchers in order to develop plastic materials of the future by using cutting-edge technology.”
New Plastics Engineering programme in Linz
Along with the investment in the new Innovation Headquarters, Borealis together with its shareholder OMV supports the new Plastics Engineering programme at the Johannes Kepler University in Linz. More than 100 students are already enrolled for the winter term 2009/10, with 25% of the students being women. The new programme is aimed at meeting the demand of the Upper Austrian plastics industry for young researchers in the years to come.
“Upper Austria aims to position itself as a region with extraordinarily high innovation capabilities. Therefore, Borealis with its international Innovation Headquarters is a significant industrial partner to help boost our innovation capabilities. Federal and state authorities as well as the industry have secured the funding of the Plastics Engineering programme in Linz in a joint – and, above all, fast – effort. The state of Upper Austria provided a total of EUR 7 million for the expansion, with around EUR 4.1 million being contributed by fifteen companies of the regional plastics industry”, says Governor Josef Pühringer. “If we all pull together, we can make a great difference. Upper Austria is on the right track in order to maintain its status as a number one region in Europe.”
In addition to the international Innovation Headquarters in Linz Borealis operates innovation centres in Stenungsund, Sweden, and Porvoo, Finland. A new innovation centre is currently being built in Abu Dhabi by Borealis’ joint venture Borouge.
For further information, please contact:
Kerstin Meckler, Head of Corporate Communications,
Tel. +43 122 400 389