Cabot Corp. (NYSE: CBT) said Wednesday that it plans to invest more than US$180 million between now and 2013 to expand its manufacturing capacity for carbon black, a material used as a reinforcement in rubber and other specialty products.
The plans follow the Boston-based company's announcement yesterday that it signed a joint venture with Risun Coal Chemicals Group to construct a carbon black manufacturing facility in Xingtai City, China, expected to increase its capacity in the region by 25%.
Cabot is also expanding capacity at plants in Indonesia, Brazil and Argentina by the end of 2013, as well as adding capacity at three facilities in Europe. The additions will increase Cabot's yearly global carbon black output by about 15%, or more than 300,000 metric tons.
"We are making investments in support of Cabot's long-term strategy to grow in emerging markets," said president and CEO Patrick Prevost.
"We already have a strong presence in many of the fastest growing regions in the world. These investments will further accelerate our growth."
Specifically, in Brazil and Argentina, Cabot will boost capacity by roughly 20%, while adding about 50% in Indonesia.
In Europe, Cabot is also preparing de-bottlenecking actions, which will extend the company's capacity by 10%.
Global demand for carbon black is increasing, especially for tires as mobility and transportation of goods grows.
Cabot's major products are carbon black, inkjet colorants, aerogel and capacitor materials, among others.