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BASF to add polyurethane blending facility to Geismar by 2015

The new BASF polyurethane blending facility slated for Geismar on La.
30 was originally intended to be built in Houston, and had even been
dubbed the “Yellow Rose” for its Texas ties, officials with the German
chemical manufacturer said last month.

Gov. Bobby Jindal, however, said his administration’s influence,
replete with a new business climate crafted by state lawmakers and an
undeniably highly skilled workforce, eventually persuaded BASF to
expand its Geismar plant and spend $42.6 million here for the new
facility.

“Maybe I shouldn’t say this, but I’ll say it anyway — I’m glad we
plucked that yellow rose from Texas and brought it to Louisiana,”
Jindal said at an early September press conference at the Geismar
facility.

BASF in Geismar and Gov. Bobby Jindal announced early September that the La. 30 plant will add a $42.6 million polyurethane blending facility by 2015, creating 22 direct jobs with an annual average salary of $72,300, plus benefits.

BASF in Geismar and Gov. Bobby Jindal announced early September that the La. 30 plant will add a $42.6 million polyurethane blending facility by 2015, creating 22 direct jobs with an annual average salary of $72,300, plus benefits.

Designed for the blending of polyurethane raw materials into products
used for many uses, including making furniture and automotive
upholstery, the new BASF facility — which could begin production by
2015’s second quarter — will create 22 direct jobs with an average
annual salary of $72,300, plus benefits, and up to 175 jobs during
construction.

The expansion is the fourth major construction project that BASF has
announced for Louisiana since 2009 for a total of more than $350
million in capital investment, Jindal said.
“In that time, these expansions have resulted in more than 600 new jobs
in Louisiana,” Jindal said.

The facility expansion will add to BASF’s more than 2,000 employees and
contract workers  already working at its Geismar plant, Jindal said.
“The new blending facility will allow BASF to blend polyurethane right
here, in our state, rather than shipping it out of state,” Jindal said.

“We’re catching more of that value, creating more wealth at home.”
BASF said it will begin construction in the second quarter of 2014.
Cheap domestic natural gas “is really facilitating an economic
renaissance” in the industry, said Tom Yura, general manager of BASF’s
Geismar site and a senior vice president, and is a key enabler in
allowing the production of “world-scale economics right here in
Louisiana.”

Combine the natural resource with the state’s economic development
atmosphere, and it becomes “an incredible one-two punch that allows
companies like BASF to continue to grow,” Yura said.
“There’s no way a company could invest $350 million by itself,” Yura
said of the state’s help.

The Department of Economic Development said it secured the project with
a custom incentives package that includes a $1.2 million tax credit
that can be claimed over five years, provided BASF meets payroll
targets.

BASF’s hiring for the new jobs is expected to take place in 2015.
“We appreciate their continued investment in our community and their
confidence in our ability to provide to provide a quality workforce for
these added assets,” Ascension Parish President Tommy Martinez said.

The announcement of the new polyurethane blending facility follows
announcements for a new surfactants plant, scheduled to begin
production next year, a formic acid plant announced last year and a
methylamines plant completed in 2011.

BASF operations in Geismar currently support a combined payroll of
approximately $200 million each year, the Department of Economic
Development said.

“If you think about this location specifically, we have the synergies,
with our infrastructure and personnel that currently exist, and if you
think about it from the business perspective,” it allows us to quickly
provide solutions to our customers, said BASF DNT site manager Julie
Faye.