Huntsman enters aliphatic TPU film market

Auburn Hills, MI — Huntsman Polyurethanes, global leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of high-performance thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) resins, today announces a major strengthening of its commitment to the expanding global glass laminating industry with a move into the optical-aliphatic (OA) film market.

Huntsman has taken this strategic step to more effectively support its customers in their ongoing quest for ever-better laminates. The move was prompted by an in-depth survey of laminators which revealed overwhelming demand for a ‘one-stop-shop’ for all laminating industry needs, from product definition to film supply. With its unrivalled technical expertise and global supply chain resources, Huntsman is uniquely qualified to meet the need for fast and reliable supply of high-performance products that deliver competitive advantage across a wide range of glass laminate applications.

From 1 May 2005 glass laminators can obtain Huntsman OA TPU films directly from Huntsman or its global distributors. The films, made from Huntsman’s high-performance resins, will be marketed worldwide under the Krystalflex™ brand and manufactured exclusively by authorized film extruders.

Thomas J. Hayes, Optical Aliphatic Business Manager for Huntsman Polyurethanes, explains, "This is a very positive move for the laminating industry. Our research clearly indicated that Huntsman could best support laminators by moving downstream to bring OA film distribution into its business model. Huntsman will thus be able to exercise greater control over film quality and enforce rigorous specifications. By working in direct partnership with Huntsman, customers will also benefit from the significant value added by the company’s 20+ years of experience, its expertise in application development and excellent technical support."

As a result of the development, Huntsman will be able to supply all of its optical film grades to customers direct or via its global distribution network. This includes Krystalflex™ films extruded from the three new aliphatic TPU resins announced at Glasstec, Germany in November 2004. Two of these, PE409 and PE 419 provide superior application flexibility at very low processing temperatures. The third, PE500/501 processes at the higher temperatures required for some critical ballistic glass applications when excellent adhesion and extraordinary toughness are essential.

Huntsman's Krystalflex films are light-stable, with outstanding physical properties and excellent optical clarity. They are the industry standard for the production of interlayer laminating films used as bonding adhesives between layers of glass, polycarbonate or other dissimilar substrates. Combining these materials creates a variety of laminate composites for use across a broad range of commercial, government, automotive, security, aerospace, electronic and residential glazing applications where extremely high strength and impact resistance are required.

Aliphatic TPU films that can be processed (autoclaved) at lower temperatures are the preferred interlayer product for the majority of glass / plastic laminations. Lower temperature processing results in higher quality laminations, lower energy use and fewer thermal stress issues in the finished composite.  Huntsman is the recognized leader in the development of low-temperature aliphatic TPU resins, hence the company's positioning that "Cooler Is Better." 

Additional information may be obtained by requesting a "Cooler is Better" Krystalflex™ brochure for glass laminators via telephone (248-322-7394), fax (248-322-7404), e-mail (, postal mail  (2190 Executive Hills Boulevard, Auburn Hills, MI, 48326), or by visiting the Krystalflex web site (

Huntsman is a global manufacturer and marketer of commodity and differentiated chemicals. Its operating companies manufacture basic products for a variety of global industries including chemicals, plastics, automotive, aviation, footwear, paints and coatings, construction, technology, agriculture, health care, textiles, detergent, personal care, furniture, appliances and packaging.  Originally known for pioneering innovations in packaging, and later, rapid and integrated growth in petrochemicals, Huntsman today has revenues of $11.5 billion, 11,500 employees and 63 operations in 22 countries.

Statements in this release that are not historical are forward-looking statements. These statements are based on management’s current beliefs and expectations. The forward-looking statements in this release are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances and involve risks and uncertainties that may affect the company’s operations, markets, products, services, prices and other factors as discussed in the Huntsman companies’ filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Significant risks and uncertainties may relate to, but are not limited to, financial, economic, competitive, environmental, political, legal, regulatory and technological factors. Accordingly, there can be no assurance that the company’s expectations will be realized. The company assumes no obligation to provide revisions to any forward-looking statements should circumstances change, except as otherwise required by securities and other applicable laws.