|Transcription||FIRESTONE TO PRODUCE CHEMICALS /
By JOSEPH E. KUEBLER
Business and Industrial Writer
A fifth major rubber company has formally entered the lucrative chemical field with the announcement that Firestone Tire & Rubber Co. and Cities Service Co. have formed the American Petrochemical Corp. |
The new firm will manufacture chemicals from petroleum. It already has developed plans for the erection of a plant, possibly at Lake Charles, La. A site is under consideration there.
Cities Service owns a 160,000-barrel refinery at Lake Charles which would be the source of supply of light hydrocarbons for the chemical plant. Firestone operates a government-owned synthetic rubber plant adjacent to the refinery.
Ownership of the chemical firm will be equally divided between the Akron company and Cities Service, a petroleum and natural gas concern.
MAJOR TIRE producers have had a deep interest in the chemical industry for years because of the close association of rubber manufacturing and chemicals. This has been especially true since the advent of synthetic rubber which is a chemical product.
Only in recent years, however, have the tire makers jumped into chemicals with both feet.
B. F. Goodrich Co., which began producing chemicals for the rubber industry before the turn of the century, established a separate chemical company in 1945.
Previously Goodrich operated a chemical division. For a time during the war, Goodrich was associated with Phillips Petroleum Co. in the joint operation of Hycar Chemical Co., which made synthetic rubber.
UNITED STATES RUBBER
CO., another long-time chemical manufacturer, has its extensive Naugatuck chemical division.
Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. made some chemicals for years for the rubber industry. In 1948 it set up a separate division to turn out chemicals for the rubber and plastic industries.
General Tire & Rubber Co. disclosed a few weeks ago that it had established a chemical division and is planning to erect a $1,000,000 plant.
Firestone was engaged in the development and production of chemicals for its own use for many years. Only since the war has it been selling resins and chemicals to others.
Harvey S. Firestone Jr., chairman of Firestone, and W. Alton Jones, Cities Services president, announced that their new firm will ultimately produce chemicals for the broad fields of plastics, synthetic rubber, additives for lubricating oil, cracking catalyst, antifreeze and various high volume petrochemicals.
GROWING REQUIREMENTS of
the armed forces, including the greatly increased demand for a wide range of chemicals, were important factors in planning the plant, they said.
"The association of Cities Service and Firestone is particularly advantageous because of their joint interest in the future of synthetic rubber and other products derived from hydrocarbons" their announcement added. |