Imerys seeks to strengthen its position as the world’s leading supplier of specialty minerals, with best-in-class operations, delivering commercial excellence and market-driven innovation. Bolstered by a new organization structured around our core markets, mining resources, high quality industrial assets, unrivaled technological and industrial processes, innovative solutions and leading positions in most of our markets, we have many strengths to guarantee sustained value creation for our key stakeholders.
We possess an extensive range of mineral resources, which effectively secures a large proportion of our supply and production costs, as well as highly effective industrial assets using a wide variety of exclusive industrial technologies and processes. We operate over 100 mineral deposits throughout the world and continue to replace and develop our mineral reserves and resources to ensure we constantly hold an average of 20 years of reserves. We mine and/or process over 30 different minerals. We harness these to provide mineral solutions which enhance the properties of their end-use applications and meet our customers’ specifications.
Our value-added solutions can be split into three categories:
- Functional additives: These are added to the customer’s formulation to improve certain properties, for example, talc improves the rigidity of automotive plastics.
- Mineral components: These are the principal constituents in the formulation, for example, zirconia is the main constituent in combustion engine oxygen sensors.
- Process enablers: These are used in the customer’s manufacturing processes but are not found in the end product itself, for example, diatomaceous earth is used to filter liquid foodstuffs.
We have specialist expertise in the following transformation processes in order to produce key properties for our customers’ products and production processes:
- Mechanical treatments: purification, refining, micronization by milling and screening, drying, molding, cycloning, elutriation, classification, flotation, mixing, etc.;
- Heat treatments: very high temperature calcination, fusion, sintering, etc.;
- Chemical treatments: synthesis, crystallization, precipitation, etc.
The mineral solutions we market account for a relatively insignificant portion of our customers’ production costs, but they add key properties to their products – such as purity, crystal structure, size and distribution of particles, shape and specific surface area – or industrial processes by making it possible to reduce energy consumption or accelerate production processes.
The solutions are sold as powders, grains, granules, blends, pastes and aqueous dispersions. Depending on the product, production cycles range from a few days to several weeks.
Our innovation strategy builds on our ability to combine minerals with applications to provide customers with significant improvements in the properties of their products, especially in terms of effectiveness and energy efficiency, while also limiting discharges and environmental impact. This expertise is a valuable asset helping us maintain our leadership position and respond effectively to the future major technological challenges facing manufacturing companies.
Imerys’ strategy is designed to deliver steady income growth for the Group to create long-term value. We continuously implement our investment program in Science & Technology, industrial capacity, mining resources and geographic expansion, maintaining a high level of investment and development.
The various acquisitions we have completed over recent years have enabled us to become the world’s leading supplier of mineral solutions to industry. They have helped to broaden our business portfolio and provide access to new technology platforms, geographic regions, minerals and products. We also manage our business portfolio to build a coherent industrial Group centered around specialty minerals which may include, from time to time, divestitures of various sizes.