Fibertex Nonwovens, which is wholly-owned by the Danish industrial conglomerate Schouw & Co, has taken over all activities in the Brazilian owned, nonwovens manufacturer DUCI. With this, Fibertex Nonwovens gets a strong foothold in the South American market and progresses towards a market leader position as supplier of nonwovens for the automotive industry.
Headquartered in Aalborg, Denmark, Fibertex Nonwovens acquires the Brazilian manufacturer of nonwovens DUCI. The transaction will have effect as of the beginning of February, and Fibertex Nonwovens will instantly gain a solid foothold in the important South American growth market.
”For many years Fibertex Nonwovens has consolidated itself as one of the world’s leading manufacturers of specialised nonwovens. Now we have obtained a unique opportunity for establishing ourselves in one of the most important growth markets in the world, and with the acquisition of Brazilian DUCI we will be able to follow some of our large European customers globally,” explains CEO of Fibertex Nonwovens, Jørgen Bech Madsen.
Fibertex Nonwovens currently has production facilities in Denmark, France, the Czech Republic, Turkey, USA and South Africa. DUCI was founded in 2001.
The Brazilian market for industrial nonwovens is the sixth largest in the world and accounts for about 120,000 tonnes a year, equivalent to about half of the South American total market. DUCI has a relatively new production platform within the so-called spunlacing technology – a fairly new production method in which nonwovens are needled by high-speed jets of water. Fibertex Nonwovens already masters this technology, and it is here in particular the Danish business sees a potential for growth.
Bech Madsen adds: “Through many years we have at Fibertex Nonwovens focused on being frontrunners in the transition from volume products to products with more specialised properties, and DUCI’s technology supports this journey.”
It is in particular as supplier to the automotive industry that Bech Madsen sees a potential in DUCI. An average European car contains about 30 square metres of advanced nonwovens, and Fibertex Nonwovens has managed to capture a market leading position as supplier of materials in everything from headliners, seats and parcel trays to exterior applications used in wheel housings, motor insulation, underbody, etc.
“We are suppliers to large parts of the European automotive industry, and with the establishment in Brazil we will obtain great possibilities of following our customers across the Atlantic Ocean. Brazil is in fact the most preferred country of production for many automotive manufacturers,” he continues.
In addition, he notes that knowledge sharing, best practice and cross-selling between Europe and South America will be some of the synergistic effects from the acquisition. The acquisition of DUCI also opens a door of entering the South American market with products for the composite industry as well as high-performance wipes, where Fibertex Nonwovens has a strong position in Europe. Furthermore, taking into account the size of Fibertex Nonwovens, the business will be much better positioned regarding sourcing the large quantities of raw materials.
DUCI is situated in the industrial area west of São Paulo and currently employs about 100 people. Fibertex Nonwovens has plans for extending the production capacity at DUCI in the coming years in line with the different nonwovens applications being spread.