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Synthomer was founded in 1963 in Frankfurt, Germany but the company´s origins go back to 1952 to a production site in Harlow, UK. Today Synthomer is one of the world’s major suppliers of latices and speciality emulsion polymers that are used in a growing range of market segments and applications including: coatings, construction, textiles, paper and synthetic latex gloves. Now headquartered in Harlow, Synthomer provides customer focused services from its operational centres in Marl, Germany and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which work in close cooperation with further area sites in Italy, Dubai, Dammam and South Africa. The company develops and markets a broad portfolio of aqueous acrylic, styrene acrylics, styrene butadiene and vinyl acetate based polymer dispersions used in a wide range of industries to create and enhance everyday consumer products. Whether you’re reading a book, opening a pack of breakfast cereal, painting your kitchen, labeling an envelope, laying a carpet, tiling a bathroom or simply driving the car, you could be using a product that has been improved by our scientists.

Why does Synthomer choose to work with Lucite International?
Synthomer buys both MMA and MAA from Lucite International, which it uses to create pure acrylic products typically used in acrylic decorative paints, wood coatings, and for the manufacture of woven and non-woven technical textiles. David Parry, Purchasing Director at Synthomer, comments: “Product quality and reliable deliveries have to be a ‘given’ in today’s world. We need our key partner suppliers to go beyond that to encompass global market coverage at competitive pricing wherever we operate. We also need excellent communications, a willingness to work closely to benchmark and improve key business processes, and to help us respond to the requirements of our customers so that we can further grow the sustainability of our business. Lucite International has delivered consistently on these things and, above all else, is easy to do business with.

What does Synthomer think are the future trends for polymers?
Megatrends associated with the push for more sustainable products, for example: striving for less VOC (Volatile Organic Compounds); reducing formaldehyde levels; and moving away from solvent based systems, have had a real impact on the technological design of materials. There continues to be a drive for water-based dispersions in the market, especially as regulatory standards become more stringent in both emerging markets and the rest of the world. There’s also a move to use more raw materials that build on renewable sources, such as bio-polymers. Synthomer is currently launching its first products to the coated paper market based on SBR/bio-polymer hybrids using a new technology platform and will continue to expand this further.

How important is innovation at Synthomer?
The company has a market-focused approach to innovation. It sees it as essential in providing customers with solutions that add value to their formulations and products. Based on major trends, Synthomer assesses the emerging needs of its customers and funnels this into our commercially driven product innovation programme. Its R&D, applications development, and commercial teams are co-located at our three state of the art technical centres in the UK, Germany and Malaysia, where teams can rapidly develop new products in close collaboration with customers. There’s also a UK-based team dedicated to Sustainable Innovation; its focus is on emerging applications and technologies, with a strong emphasis on sustainability trends, eg. bio-polymers, energy reduction and the challenges of urbanisation, to drive new innovative product offerings. Synthomer also partners with a number of academic institutions to carry out research and generate new intellectual property. Find our more >>