Solvay and Air Liquide announced they have entered into an agreement to form a worldwide fluorine gas business joint venture. It will build, own and operate modular on-site fluorine cleaning gas units for the flat panel display and silicon thin film photovoltaic industries and thus offer these industries an economic, reliable and environmentally-friendly product for cleaning applications. Fluorine gas is a cleaning gas that has no global warming potential and enables the customers to increase their productivity.
This partnership builds on both companies strengths. Solvay brings its 45 years experience in running large-scale fluorine production and its raw materials supply chain and Air Liquide its global presence, infrastructure and industrial gas supply relationships with the leading electronics manufacturers. Establishment of the joint venture is subject to antitrust approval.
Vincent De Cuyper, Group General Manager of the Chemicals Sector and Member of the Executive Committee of Solvay said: "This partnership will help satisfy growing world demand for environmentally-friendly cleaning gases. The combination of market experience and know how from Air Liquide, the market leader in gases for the electronic industry, and Solvay's proprietary breakthrough modular technology, will enable our partnership to offer significant economic benefits to its customers and bring at the same time advantages for the environment".
François Darchis, Senior Vice-President and a member of Air Liquide's Executive Committee commented: "This major step will allow Air Liquide to expand its offer in the fast growing electronics market. Solvay brings its field-proven fluorine production technology and expertise. By developing this non-greenhouse cleaning solution alternative for our customers, Air Liquide reiterates its commitment to environmental preservation. High-Tech solutions and the Environment are two of the Air Liquide Group's growth drivers."