Axalta unwraps Technology Centre on its 150th

Axalta Coating Systems has marked its 150th birthday by cutting the ribbon on its newly expanded European Technology Centre (ETC) in Wuppertal, Germany.

The centre will be home to the company’s liquid coating research facilities for the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region, although solutions will be shared globally.

Matthias Schönberg, vice president of Axalta and president of EMEA, said, ‘Axalta is making this considerable investment in its EMEA research and development facilities to expand, to upgrade and to centralise our technological capabilities to support our growth in the region.

‘Over 300 technical professionals will work on creating and developing next generation paints and services to address regional market needs and to meet our customers’ specific requirements.’

The ETC comprises facilities that house the latest coating research equipment. The entire campus encompasses 15,000sqmof laboratories, formulation and application capabilities, a

weathering and corrosion service, pilot-scale and full scale-up facilities, customer demonstration centre, as well as offices.

Dr Barry Snyder, Axalta’s senior vice president and chief technology officer, added, ‘Axalta’s expanded ETC in Wuppertal will include several new labs for light vehicle paint research, new laboratories for industrial electrocoat research, as well as expanded labs for refinish paints and new colour development facilities for both the refinish and commercial vehicle markets.

‘Its central location for Europe, and historical importance to the company as a whole, make it the ideal base for regional liquid paint research and development work.’

Axalta’s origins can be traced back 150 years to the Wuppertal site. Consolidating all the company’s waterbound products, it now includes more than 100 buildings, 60km of pipeline and 5km of streets. It’s even got its own fire brigade and on-site training centre.

The new ETC is part of a wider company strategy, with recent announcements of new technology centres to be constructed in North America (Philadelphia) and Asia Pacific (Shanghai).