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Wednesday February 11

DuPont Increases Automotive Coatings Presence in China

DuPont has acquired additional equity in its DuPont Red Lion joint ventures in Beijing and Changchun, China, to reinforce its position as the leading coatings supplier to the growing Chinese automotive industry.

With government approvals obtained at year-end 2003, DuPont now has increased its equity position in the DuPont Red Lion - Beijing joint venture to 76 percent from 60 percent and has renamed it "DuPont Red Lion (Beijing) Company, Limited" (DRBC). The joint venture in Beijing was initially formed in 1992. DuPont also acquired 100 percent ownership of its other DuPont Red Lion joint venture in Changchun, China, by purchasing the remaining 40 percent interest held by Red Lion. The company will be known as "DuPont Performance Coatings - Changchun" (DPCC). The DuPont and Red Lion joint venture in Changchun was initially formed in 1995.

Financial terms of the DuPont joint venture equity increases were not disclosed.

"By increasing our equity position for coatings supply in China, DuPont will be better able to meet the growth objectives of the Chinese automotive industry with the latest technology to meet worldwide expectations for aesthetics, durability and environmental compliance," said Marty M. McQuade, vice president and general manager for the automotive OEM coatings unit of DuPont Performance Coatings, DuPont Herberts Automotive Systems.

"To further strengthen our capabilities in China to provide our customers with world-class services and locally manufactured products, we will use this base to invest further in additional manufacturing and technical service capabilities," McQuade said.

Current coatings manufacturing in Beijing will relocate to new facilities in a Beijing industrial zone, starting operations by the end of 2005. The new facility will include a technical center to allow efficient testing and adaptation of individual coating products to quickly respond to customer requirements.

In Changchun, DuPont will upgrade facilities to meet international standards and will increase capacity. The plant is capable of manufacturing a wide variety of modern automotive coatings including water borne coatings. The resin facility provides sufficient capacity to localize supply. The facilities will include a state-of-the-art laboratory and application center.

DuPont has increased the number of experts from Europe and the Americas working within both companies to further train local staff, particularly in technical manufacturing and customer technical service areas, and to accelerate the upgrade and expansion of the production facilities. Currently, more than 500 people are dedicated to provide locally produced coatings products and services in China.

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