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The History of Elkem Silicones



About usAbout ushttps://silicones.elkem.com/EN/company/About_Us/Pages/The-History-of-Bluestar-Silicones.aspx2019-03-29T16:35:36Z

Elkem Silicones celebrates its 65th anniversary of expertise in 2019.

​The History of Elkem Silicones

We're proud of our development over the years, from a small innovative company based in Saint-Fons on the banks of the Rhône river in the outskirts of Lyon in France, to become one of the world's foremost fully integrated silicone manufacturers, with R&D laboratories, production sites and sales offices located in Europe, North America, South America and Asia. We offer you a trip through time to allow you to discover our long and successful history.

The Founding Years

1944 – The "Société des Usines Chimiques Rhône-Poulenc" (S.U.C.R.P) processes a trial batch of silicones using an organic-silicate method

1948 – Industrial manufacturing begins and the RHODORSIL brand is born

1954 – Construction by Rhône-Poulenc of a new manufacturing plant in Saint Fons and creation of the "Société Industrielle des Silicones et des Dérivés du Silicium", invention of cold vulcanizable silicone rubber and other new silicone materials

Internationalization and Expansion

1955 – First international expansion, with the creation of Siliconas Hispania in Barcelona, Spain

1958 – Louis Ceyzériat patents CAF acetic sealants

1961 – Rhône-Poulenc S.A. becomes the holding company of S.U.C.R.P

1968 - Siliconas Hispania opens a new plant in Santa Perpetua

A Major Player

1970 – With its plant in Saint Fons, France becomes the fourth-biggest silicone producing country in the world

1971 – Rhône-Poulenc and Péchiney St-Gobain merge to jointly manage their two plants, SISS and Rhodorsil, which are still centers of silicone manufacturing today

1973 – Synthetic manufacturing is launched in Roussillon and the first silicone sales are made to China

1987 – The joint venture between Rhône-Poulenc Italia and Gibitre lead to the founding of Evisil, producing vulcanized elastomers in Treviolo

1988 – Rhône-Poulenc, buys out all shares in Siliconas Hispania and acquires PCL in Rock Hill, South Carolina, the company's first foray into the US

1989 – Rhone-Poulenc acquires the tire release business of Lyndal Chemicals in Dalton, Georgia

A Global Company to End the Century

1993 – Rhône-Poulenc acquires the Possehl Polymerchemie silicone production site in Germany, integrated into Rhône-Poulenc Silicon GmbH Germany, headquartered in Leverkusen

1994 – Expansion continues in the US, with the acquisition of Visilox in Troy New York

1995 – Rhone-Poulenc invests in the Chinese market, setting up two production lines of RTV and AAP in Shanghai

1997 – Spain becomes the lead production site for the Group's Lyndcoat products

1998 - Rhône Poulenc combines its chemical and polymer units to found Rhodia SA, listed on the Paris and New York Stock Exchanges on June 25

1999 – Rhodia acquires Applied Silicones based in Ventura, California

A New Century and New Growth

2000 – Rhodia Silicones Italia buys out Gibitre and Evsil becomes Rhodia Silicones Italia Spa, independent from Rhodia Italia, based in Milan, the Santa Perpetua plant expands its production capacities to serve the rubber industry

2001 – Transfer of several production lines Saint Fons to Roussillon and construction of new plants in Saint Fons

2002 – The Roussillon plant launches a new pyrogened silicium production unit

2003 – The Troy plant moves to Rock Hill, South Carolina

2004 – BlueStar Co. Ltd. becomes a fully owned specialist subsidiary of ChinaChem Group

2007 – Bluestar Silicones International, headquartered in Lyon, France, is established on February 1st 2007, following the acquisition of Rhodia Silicones by China National Bluestar Corporation, German headquarters move from Leverkusen to Lübeck and Bluestar Silicones Brazil sets up administrative headquarters in São Paulo

2008 – Bluestar Silicones Brazil launches its R&D and analytical control laboratory

2009 – Bluestar Silicones Italia launches a new plant in Caronno Pertusella

2010 – Several new projects are launched in China and HCR subcontracting activity is transferred from Caronno Pertusella to Germany

2011 – The Bluestar Group acquires Elkem and strengthens its position in the silicon value chain, launch of several industrial projects in Saint Fons and Santa Perpetua, relocation of offices in Leverkusen Germany and launch of the Corcovado industrial project

2012 – The Rhodorsil brand becomes Bluesil, launch of a new laboratory for worldwide Personal Care technical services in Spain, extension of the Lübeck site, launch of the Belo Horizonte Project to manufacture in Latin America plant products for the Release Coatings market, Bluestar Silicones, North America opened their new manufacturing facility in York, South Carolina 

2015 - Elkem and Bluestar Silicones International announce their formal integration into one company. Bluestar Silicones Germany has a new building in Lübeck. Bluestar Silicones Brazil officially announces the move of the industrial plant from Santo André to Joinville (Santa Catarina)

2017 - Bluestar Silicones becomes Elkem Silicones and the Bluestar Jiangxi Xinghuo Silicones is integrated into the silicones division of Elkem, while Bluestar Lanzhou Silicon Materials was integrated into the Silicone Materials Division of Elkem. Since then, Elkem has become the world's leading integrated silicones manufacturer, covering all processes from silicon metal treatment to the manufacturing of downstream applications. Click to discover the history of Xinghuo Silicones.