Stahl has opened a Center of Excellence for Performance Coatings in Suzhou, China.
The environmentally friendly centre will focus on innovative performance coating solutions for a wide variety of materials.
Customers, OEMs, brands and other partners came together for the festive opening event.
With the ongoing addition of new Centers of Excellence around the world, Stahl is strengthening its position as a technology leader.
The new facility in Suzhou brings to nine the number of Centers of Excellence the company has worldwide.
At each centre, the company’s experts work side-by-side with partners to meet the growing demand for products and solutions that have less impact on the environment.
The addition of the Suzhou Center of Excellence puts Stahl in an even stronger position to combine its strengths with those of its local partners to create high-quality solutions for the Automotive, Apparel & Accessories and Interior industries.
Stahl strongly believes in taking responsibility, whether it is developing new products or building new offices, factories and centres.
As such, the new Center of Excellence has been equipped with solar panels providing part of the electricity that is consumed by the lab.
A solar illumination and motion-detection lighting system have been implemented to save electricity.
Green plants on the rooftop enable temperature control during the hot season and the investment in a high efficiency air filter system guarantees clean air emission.
Also, the choice for low VOC boards for the partitions and recurring construction materials contribute to the sustainability of the Center.
Driver for more sustainable development
Hagen Chen, Managing Director Greater China at Stahl, said: “China occupies an important position in the world as a driver of more sustainable development.
"We strive to make coating solutions with the lowest possible impact in terms of people’s health and the environment.
"Over the last few years, our performance coatings business has been growing enormously in China, especially in the automotive industry.
"The requests for applications for seat and trim, elastomer coatings, and flock adhesives are growing on a daily basis.
"Besides the automotive industry, the new facility anticipates the growing demand in China for packaging film and paper, synthetic materials, coated fabrics, textiles and speciality applications like medical and supportive gloves."
Highway to Excellence
Guests at the opening event were treated to a ‘highway-to-excellence’ experience.
The ceremonial opening was attended by local authority members of the Suzhou High Tech New District.
Among the speakers were Lydia Lin, East Asia Director Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC), who spoke about the importance of a DMF(A)-free industry.
Terry Ragunath, from HP Inc. Large Format Printing Division, talked about the company’s new partnership with Stahl, begun in August this year, to increase the durability of printed synthetics.
Stahl’s Uwe Siebgens, Group Director Performance Coatings & Polymers, spoke about the future of performance coatings.
During the day, attendees further got to know Stahl’s environmentally conscious solutions, such as bio-based PolyMatte® and the Stahl EVO® portfolio.
Inspiring customers around the world
Stahl has nine Centers of Excellence around the world, covering almost every continent.
The centres were set up to inspire customers by showcasing Stahl’s latest innovations, varying from smart surfaces that change colour with the temperature, to special haptics for a warm and pleasant touch.
As at Stahl’s other centres, the Suzhou Center of Excellence will also conduct customer trials that will serve as a basis for the development and application of new solutions.