Tuesday, 09 March 2010 16:00

Kemira and VTT to establish a Center of Water Efficiency Excellence in Finland

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Kemira Oyj and VTT (Technical Research Centre of Finland) will establish a Center of Water Efficiency Excellence in Finland. The total cost of the research, which will be performed at the center, is estimated at 120 M€, including external funding. The investments will be allocated into 4 years, resulting further investment activities in projects for piloting and proof on concept purposes. The center will employ 200 persons annually.

The current Finnish competence of the water sector is being gathered into one center. The goal is to develop unique water knowledge to Finland and to create new business opportunities for companies in the environmental technology sector. The research center supports Kemira's strategic target to become a leading water chemistry company and to promote profitable growth by generating new business in the already strong field of water knowledge. Kemira will arrange a press conference today, March 9 at 10.15 (Helsinki time), including presentations by Harri Kerminen, Kemira's President and CEO, along with Paula Lehtomäki, Minister of the Environment, Johan Grön, Kemira EVP of R&D and Technology, and Erkki KM Leppävuori, President and CEO of VTT.

The main partners of the Center of Water Efficiency Excellence are Kemira and VTT. "The aim is to develop new technology, which helps to enhance the water usage and recycling, and to create more sustainable and energy-efficient solutions for the water intensive industry. When choosing the research sectors, one of the main selection criteria has been the growth of the global markets. Some examples of the research sectors are the cost-efficient cultivation of sea water into drinkable water, the utilization of bio mass resulting from the waste water treatment in production processes of energy and bio energy, and the decomposition of products", says Johan Grön.

"Already today, Kemira is one of the leading water chemistry companies globally. We have operations in 40 countries, an experience of decades in water technology, and a wide competence for different needs in water management. For Kemira, this is a strategic project, in which we are looking for growth based on new products and customer relations. The lack of water and the problems caused by it is a sizable challenge globally for industries and megacities. The regions suffering from water scarcity are usually those where the industrial and population growth is the most rapid. This is why the water-intensive industry is constantly looking for solutions to improve their water efficiency. Normally, the water availability is not a problem in Finland but we have competencies to solve the challenges caused by water scarcity. For Kemira and other environmental technology companies, this provides growth opportunities", says Harri Kerminen.

''VTT has the know how and the structure that can combine different fields of technologies and expertise that meet well with the qualifications in developing new and open-minded environment and water technology. I believe that those products that are being developed in a center based on top expertise and know how meet high market demands and possess growing international potential. I also hope that this will open up a new commercialization of technology opportunity where top end technology can be exploited in water purification, recycling, monitoring and treatment of process waters'', says VTT's President & CEO Erkki KM Leppävuori. According to Veli-Pekka Saarnivaara, CEO, Tekes (the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation), "Tekes wants to be actively involved in this project and in constructing a strong basis for competence in Finland, and in new business activities in order to solve a growing global problem".

Press Conference
March 9, 2010 at 10.15 (EET), at Gallery Kalhama & Piippo Contemporary, Mannerheimintie 3 B, 5th floor (Helsinki, Finland). The conference is in Finnish. The material is available in Finnish and English on the Kemira web site. Further information: Anna-Kaisa Säkkinen, phone +358 50 387 6293.

Kemira Oyj
Päivi Antola, Senior Manager, Investor Relations and Financial Communications

Further information:

Kemira Oyj
Johan Grön, EVP, R&D and Technology,
Phone +358 10 862 1058
Leena Lie, VP of Communications
Phone +358 40 7457943

Kari Larjava, Vice President
Phone +358 40 500 9673

Kemira is a global 2.5 billion euro chemicals company that is focused on serving customers in water-intensive industries. The company offers water quality and quantity management that improves customers' energy, water, and raw material efficiency. Kemira's vision is to be a leading water chemistry company. Its paints and coatings business, Tikkurila, aims to be the market leader in decorative paints and selected wood and metal coatings in chosen markets.


VTT, Technical Research Centre of Finland, is the biggest multi-technological applied research organisation in Northern Europe. VTT provides high-end technology solutions and innovation services for domestic and international customers, companies, and the public sector. The personnel count of VTT is 2,900.


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