Brenntag warehousing. Image supplied.

JOHANNESBURG - Global market leader in chemical distribution, Brenntag, has edged into the South African market through a merger of four companies to form Brenntag South Africa.

In a move expected to strengthen chemical distribution in the country, the company merged Lionheart, Plastichem, Multilube and Warren Chem Specialities, before launching Brenntag South Africa earlier this month.

Lionheart has a diversified product portfolio that includes intermediate products and raw materials while Plastichem is an agent, distributor and specialist value added service provider of raw materials in the plastic and rubber industries.

Multilube is a lubricants dedicated company that specialises in providing high end, performance lubrication solutions and Warren Chem Specialities is a supplier of raw materials from prime producers to the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, food and beverage, wine, chemical and fine chemical industries.

Michael Thomson. Image supplied.

Brenntag, which is listed on the German Stock Exchange, said last week that it planned on becoming one of the leading chemical distributors in Africa with East Africa and Egypt likely to be its next steps.

“Within a few years we have established a strong local footprint in South Africa, Maghreb (Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia), Mauritius, Ghana and Nigeria. Together with Brenntag Exports we are already able to serve all African markets,” it said. Brenntag, which connects chemical manufacturers and chemical users, said with the ability to now offer more chemical solutions to its customers, the company would continue to expand its footprint within the industry.

Brenntag Africa president, Michael Thomson, said: “The new company has a focused commercial set-up, specifically tailored to customer industry sectors and leveraging on the expertise and skills of the former individual companies, ensuring that the business is strategically and operationally better positioned to realise growth.

Brenntag Distribution. Image supplied.

“Bringing the individual companies together has allowed for the development of a customer centered approach, aided by dedicated product management, strengthened departments for safety, quality and regulatory affairs and more streamlined and efficient operations functions.”

Carl Blomme, regional president Brenntag Europe West and MEA said the new structure was a perfect commercial organisation leveraging the company’s expertise to serve its valued customers and suppliers. “It’s of mutual benefit to both employees and the company. Due to our performance excellence culture, our focused organisation will create an environment where individuals can develop and where we can assure delivering the best services to our business partners.”

Brenntag South Africa has about 180 employees and locations in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Durban. 

Brenntag – whose business includes chemical distribution and services in life science, material science as well as industrial sales and services operates a global network with more than 550 locations in 74 countries. Last year (2016) the company, which has a global workforce of about 15 000 employees, generated sales of €10.5 billion (R164.5bn).

With more than 10 000 products and a world-class supplier base, Brenntag offers solutions to about 185 000 customers, which include specific application technology, extensive technical support and inventory management, among others.