SGL Group and Lindner Group Establish Joint Venture for Graphite-Based ""Green"" Air Conditioning in Buildings
SGL Group – The Carbon Company – and the Lindner Group – the worldwide construction specialist – today announced the creation of a joint venture for “green” air conditioning technology in buildings. The joint venture, in which SGL Group will hold a 51% stake and the Lindner Group 49%, will focus on the global growth market for energy efficient and environmentally friendly air conditioning in buildings. The company will trade under the name SGL Lindner GmbH & Co. KG. The joint venture is expected to begin operations at the beginning of 2013. Its creation is subject to the approval of the relevant antitrust authorities.
The objective is to offer the entire value chain from basic materials, heating and cooling elements through to energy saving complete solutions for building temperature control. The joint venture will combine the materials expertise of SGL Group in the manufacture of the environmentally friendly graphite construction material ECOPHIT® with the know-how of the Lindner Group in interior fit-out, facade construction and insulation engineering.
Burkhard Straube, Chairman of SGL Group’s New Markets Business Unit, made the following statement: “With this collaborative venture, we are responding to the increasing demand for “green buildings”, namely resource conserving, energy efficient buildings that are either newly constructed or being refurbished. In this context, modern, environmentally friendly air conditioning technology, made possible by ECOPHIT®, plays a central role. In conjunction with the Lindner Group, the leading international specialist in interior outfitting, we will be in the position to offer our partners and customers customized complete solutions, including those for large-scale projects, from a single source.”
Heinrich Büchner, CEO of the Lindner Group: “The Lindner Group has built an excellent reputation for innovative systems in the construction industry over many years. The development of sustainable, resource-conserving products and processes is a key strength of our company. SGL Group is the perfect partner for us, one that possesses the appropriate technology to raise the performance of our innovative products even higher. In the construction sector, graphite products are still in their infancy. Lindner will use its almost 50 years of experience in the construction industry to make this advanced technology accessible to our partners and customers in the form of high-performance system solutions.”
Experts have forecast that the worldwide market for “green buildings” will grow by more than 20% a year over the next few years. This includes the construction and refurbishment of buildings to a high standard of resource-efficiency with regard to energy, water and materials usage. This development is being further accelerated by rising energy prices and stricter statutory requirements with a focus on the efficient use of resources. In Germany, the best-known project of this type is Deutsche Bank’s “Green Towers”. For this project, Lindner managed the entire interior outfitting and used SGL Group’s graphite-based ECOPHIT® products in its heating and cooling ceilings.
The material ECOPHIT® is manufactured from expanded natural graphite. It is extremely lightweight with excellent thermal conductivity. It is also non-flammable and temperature-resistant. ECOPHIT® products therefore enhance heat transfer in heating and cooling applications. Energy savings of up to 40% can be achieved compared with standard air conditioning systems. The recyclability of ECOPHIT® is also of great benefit to the “green building” market.
SGL Group’s ECOPHIT® family of products includes graphite plates in a wide range of thicknesses as well as granules and powders made of pure natural graphite. In the future, these graphite materials will be used in cooling ceiling systems bearing the brand name “ECOPHIT® PLAFOTHERM®”.