We are one of the world's largest producers of synthetic rubber. We develop, produce and market high-performance rubbers that are used for a wide range of applications.
1909 - Invention of synthetic rubber: In the scientific laboratory of the Elberfeld site of Farbfabriken vorm. Friedr. Bayer & Co., a team of researchers led by the German chemist Fritz Hofmann successfully synthesizes the hydrocarbon isoprene, the basic building block of natural rubber, using polymerization. The Imperial Patent Office grants Bayer patent no. 250 690 for the "Process for the Production of Artificial Rubber"
1929 - Patent for Buna: German research teams are using sodium to produce another synthetic rubber from butadiene: Buna. When chemists Walter Bock and Eduard Tschunkur combine butadiene with another building block, styrene, the styrene rubber Buna S is born. The patent for the "copolymerization" of butadiene and styrene is granted on June 21, 1929. The Buna trademark is now protected for ARLANXEO.
1943 - Increased production of synthetic rubber: Mass production of Buna S synthetic rubber begins in Germany in 1937. Huge plants are built, initially in Schkopau, Marl and Ludwigshafen am Rhein. By 1943, the German chemical industry is already producing over 110,000 metric tons of synthetic rubber. At this time, only the USA produces more.
1975 - New rubber types: This year sees the start of production of bromobutyl, an exceptionally resistant butyl rubber for tires and pharmaceutical packaging. The production of chloroprene rubber begins in Dormagen; ARLANXEO now markets it under the Baypren brand which is used for cable sheaths, transport belts and adhesives. And the hydrogenated nitrile rubber Therban is patented for the first time.
2005 - Founding of LANXESS: The Bayer Group spins off parts of its chemicals business and its polymers division into an independent company – including the rubber business, which today belongs to ARLANXEO. The company goes public under the name LANXESS in 2005: It is one of the largest chemical companies in the world with 15,000 employees in 21 countries and a comprehensive product lineup. The core business consists of plastics, specialty chemicals and rubbers.
2008 - Acquisition of Petroflex in Brazil: LANXESS acquires Petroflex, one of the world's largest synthetic rubber manufacturers with headquarters in Rio de Janeiro. Petroflex produces various types of rubber in Brazil, primarily for the tire industry, at its Cabo, Duque de Caxias and Triunfo sites. With the acquisition, LANXESS expands its rubber portfolio and strengthens its position in the growth market of South America.
2011 - LANXESS acquires DSM Elastomers: LANXESS acquires the elastomer business of the Dutch company Royal DSM along with its innovative ACE technology. DSM Elastomers produces the synthetic rubber ethylene-propylene-diene monomer (EPDM) in Sittard-Geleen, Netherlands, and in Triunfo, Brazil. This EPDM rubber is sold under the name Keltan. Today, ARLANXEO owns the rights to the brand.
2013 - Butyl plant opened in Singapore: LANXESS opens Asia's most advanced butyl rubber plant in Singapore. The plant has a maximum production capacity of 100,000 metric tons per year and produces halobutyl rubber and butyl rubber. With its additional sites in Sarnia, Canada, and Zwijndrecht, Belgium, LANXESS becomes the first butyl rubber manufacturer to have a global production network.
2015 - Further growth in Asia: A new plant for ethylene-propylene-diene rubber (EPDM) goes into operation in Changzhou, China. It can produce ten different premium grades of EPDM rubber with a maximum capacity of 160,000 metric tons per year. And, right next to its butyl rubber plant in Singapore, LANXESS opens the first Asian plant for neodymium butadiene rubber (Nd-BR). Capacity: up to 140,000 tons per year.
2016 - ARLANXEO joint venture launches: LANXESS establishes a joint venture for its rubber business with Saudi Aramco, the world's largest energy producer. The two groups each hold 50 percent of the shares initially. The new company, known as ARLANXEO, has its headquarters in Maastricht, the Netherlands. It specializes in the development, production and marketing of synthetic rubber.
2018 - Saudi Aramco is sole owner: Saudi Aramco acquires the remaining 50 percent of LANXESS shares, and ARLANXEO becomes a wholly owned subsidiary on December 31st, 2018. The energy and chemical producer based in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, wants to develop its petrochemical business even faster in the future. As the sole owner, Saudi Aramco can strengthen ARLANXEO with targeted investments and optimize its own value chain.