Axalta Coating Systems, a global supplier of liquid and powder coatings, has opened a latest generation manufacturing facility in Shanghai to produce waterborne coatings for China’s growing automobile market. The newest and one of Axalta’s most advanced waterborne production facilities, the plant reflects the key role that China plays in Axalta’s global strategy, which is focused on providing sustainable coating products and application systems for customers while reducing the environmental impact of the production process. The new facility is located adjacent to Axalta’s operations center that opened in the Jiading district of Shanghai in 2008.
The new facility features advanced manufacturing technologies and design concepts such as integrated production systems engineered to reduce the environmental footprint of coating production. The highly automated facility can also maximize the use of raw materials and accelerate manufacturing cycle time. Advanced air filtration systems are designed to optimize air quality within the facility and to reduce emissions. The new facility will double Axalta’s capacity in China for the production of waterborne coatings, further enhancing the company’s market leadership in serving automotive customers in China, the world’s biggest automotive market.
“Axalta is proud to be a key waterborne coatings provider to China’s growing vehicle market,” said Axalta Chairman and CEO Charlie Shaver at the opening ceremony. “Our expanded facility will provide sustainable coating options for our customers. The new manufacturing center reflects the skill and dedication of our employees who were able to complete the entire construction project in only 10 months.”
The waterborne coating products produced at the Jiading location are designed to meet global environmental requirements, such as the EU’s VOC Regulation 2004/42/EC, which can help reduce the overall environmental footprint of China’s auto industry.
Commenting on the new waterborne plant, Sun Lianying, chairman of the China National Coating Industry Association, said, “This is a solid demonstration of Axalta’s long-term commitment to the China market and its eco-responsible production process which will have a positive impact on the sustainable development of China’s coating industries. The development is fully aligned with the Chinese government’s goal of developing a sustainable auto industry, using green solutions to meet rising market demand across the country.”
One of the highlights of the plant opening included a sustainability exhibition showcasing how Axalta manufacturing systems, products, applications, and research and development practices each contribute to a sustainable business model. The exhibition also illustrated how the Jiading waterborne plant can help reduce customers’ environmental footprint by reducing volatile organic compounds and energy consumption from their operations.
“To be effective, sustainability must be about productivity and profitability as much as it is about the effects on the environment and society,” said Shaver. “In this way, increasingly sustainable products and applications help to drive business growth as well as make Axalta a better partner for our customers.”
The new plant represents a significant expansion of Axalta’s presence in China. It joins two other dedicated liquid coating manufacturing operations in the country, an Asia Pacific R&D laboratory and color development center, four training facilities for refinish customers and six powder coating manufacturing locations. Axalta’s multiple resources in China work together to support the sustained, long-term growth of China’s automotive and other industries that use Axalta coatings.