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2017-11-29 | Speeches

Saltigo celebrates 50 years of pioneering chemistry

Adress by Dr. Torsten Derr, Managing Director, Saltigo GmbH

Lord Mayor,
Dear Mr. Fink,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Dear colleagues,

The buzz here in the tent is nothing new for anyone who has been involved in and contributed to the ZeTO expansion and modernization project. It’s been a hive of activity for an entire year. It will, however, give the politicians and journalists we have with us today an idea of the atmosphere during the construction phase we’ve just completed.

Today we have cause to celebrate, and we’re doing so in the very tent that has acted as a hub for everyone involved in the project since summer 2016. This is where people took their breaks, held discussions and ensured we were able to celebrate the successful completion of the project on schedule today.

Everyone has pulled together – the ZeTO team, external staff, plant fitters, chemists and steelworkers. You’ve all given your best and demonstrated a huge amount of commitment.

Together, we’ve succeeded in making sure production at the new plants can start from January 2018. And this additional capacity has come at just the right time. The order books for the new multipurpose production lines are already well filled.

Some EUR 60 million has been invested in the expansion and modernization measures that began in 2015.

Saltigo is a strong player in the field of agrochemicals. All the world's major agro companies are on our customer list. We produce for them ultra-modern pesticides that work similarly to drugs - extremely selective. This means that the chemical complexity of pesticides is comparable to that of pharmaceutical products. Up to 20 chemical steps are required to produce these high-tech molecules in customized processes. And this is exactly why we need the new plant.

We have achieved three goals with this investment:

1st: We've made a technological leap. The system is completely recipe-controlled - we have installed high-quality components and this gives us flexibility for the future.

2nd: We have strengthened the Leverkusen production network because a plant like ZeTO never runs alone. The plant is dependent on the help of our unique infrastructure and the special technologies of other Saltigo plants. With this investment, the network has become even stronger.

3rd: We have created additional capacities. Previously, our order books were so well filled that there was little room for more large-volume pesticides. Now we will grow together with our customers.

How did we carry out the project? We chose the Brownfield strategy.

But what exactly does brownfield mean? Imagine this project like open-heart surgery. Production continues during the construction phase – at full capacity with no interruptions or stoppages.

Constructing a building like this is a herculean task. Compartmentalized processes need to be painstakingly harmonized, combining engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning operations. Each and every construction step needs to be coordinated with the previous and subsequent ones down to the very last detail - while production is running.

One cog interlinks with the next, and it’s with great pride that we can now say project implementation has been a big success.

Dear colleagues, it is thanks to your commitment that we can celebrate the successful completion of the project here today. On the one hand, we remained within time and within budget, and on the other hand, we achieved all planned production volumes during the construction phase, with ongoing operations.

Everyone involved has been fully committed throughout and I’d like to say a big thank you for that.

Lord Mayor Richrath, I’d also like to thank you and the city of Leverkusen. During the construction phase, you visited us here at CHEMPARK and gained an insight into the complexity of this project. You supported us wherever you could in challenging times.

That’s what I call constructive collaboration between business and politicians.

Saltigo and Leverkusen, Leverkusen and LANXESS.
We count on each other.

Please do now join us for some refreshments. Let’s celebrate together. After all, we’ve had a stressful time of it. You’ve earned it – we’ve all earned it.

Thank you!


Mark Mätschke

Mark Mätschke
Head of General Press and Trade & Technical Press

Phone: +49 221 8885 3372

Fax: +49 221 8885 4994

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Ilona Kawan

Ilona Kawan
Spokesperson Trade and Technical Press

Phone: +49 221 8885 1684

Fax: +49 221 8885 4865

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