The WACKER Group’s Prospects

According to our projected scenario, we expect the world economy to grow in 2019. Most momentum will come from emerging markets in Asia, with stable growth in Europe and the USA.

Investments and Production

As in the previous year, our capital expenditures in 2019 will focus on production plants for intermediates and downstream products. WACKER’s priority is to grow its business organically. We continue to see good organic-growth potential for applications and in markets. Capital expenditures of around €400 million in 2019 will be below the prior-year level and remain well below depreciation. Most investment spending will be for WACKER SILICONES. Just over 50 percent of capital expenditure is aimed at securing the continued growth of our operating activities, with the remainder dedicated to optimization and modernization projects.

At WACKER SILICONES, we are constructing a new plant in Charleston, Tennessee (USA). Other projects include facilities to manufacture liquid rubber in Burghausen (Germany) and Zhangjiagang (China). We are also building a new -metal facility in Holla (Norway). At WACKER POLYMERS, we are expanding VAE dispersion plants in Nanjing (China) and investing in a new dispersion plant and spray dryer in Ulsan (South Korea).

In 2019, we will conclude several investment projects and bring the facilities on stream.

Facility Start-Ups in 2019












Holla, Norway


Production facility for silicon metal



Ulsan, South Korea


Dispersion reactor and spray dryer



Charleston, USA


Production facility for pyrogenic silica



Nünchritz, Germany


Capacity extension for production of siloxane



Burghausen, Germany


Capacity extension for production of liquid silicone rubber



Maintenance costs will amount to about €435 million in 2019.

Future Products and Services

WACKER SILICONES is relying on a diverse range of applications for the construction, electronics, automotive and personal care industries. The construction sector offers new prospects for the use of -modified hybrid , which hold promise of high growth rates. This technology can be used to manufacture innovative sealants and adhesives as well as wear-resistant protective coatings for concrete floors. Marketing of a new silane oligomer for water-repellent fiber-cement panels has got off to a good start. Demand for specialty silanes for microelectronics is growing. Thermally conductive silicone are becoming an indispensable material for electromobility. Their cooling properties make specialty silicones an important thermal-management component for state-of-the-art battery cells.

WACKER POLYMERS is intensifying its activities in polymeric binders for sophisticated coating and construction applications. A significant trend here is growing customer demand for sustainable, environmentally compatible solutions. The division is actively seizing these market opportunities by developing appropriate product lines. For example, WACKER POLYMERS has become the world’s first manufacturer capable of using renewable resources to produce commercial quantities of based on vinyl acetate- copolymer.

With its products, WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS is opening up new market opportunities for nutritional supplements in sport. Studies have shown that both coenzyme Q10 and the herbal antioxidant curcumin promote not only general performance, but also muscular endurance and regeneration. As both substances are “sparingly soluble” in water and therefore difficult for the human body to absorb, the division’s approach is to convert them into complexes. This boosts their bioavailability and affords a way to incorporate them into various products aimed at sports enthusiasts.

In the coming years, demand for high-quality will also grow further. Crystalline solar cells are dominant worldwide. Demand is continuously growing for monocrystalline cells – premium products that are highly efficient and generate more electricity from the same amount of sunlight. WACKER, as a technology leader, is very well positioned here. With our hyperpure polysilicon, we are ideally placed to supply the fast growing segment for monocrystalline cells. In addition, we are steadily increasing our share of high-quality polysilicon for semiconductors.

Research & Development

The Group’s research and development work remains focused on key strategic projects. WACKER intends to spend 10 percent of its R&D budget on key projects in 2019 (2018: 10 percent). Our R&D work prioritizes the highly promising fields of energy, electronics, consumer care, and construction applications. An area of special emphasis is energy storage and renewable-energy generation.


We will advance WACKER’s digitalization program with a wide range of individual projects across the entire company. In 2019, we will launch a new customer information and support system to enhance customer proximity and improve customer orientation. WACKER will also unveil a redesigned website. We are implementing new digital software solutions in production and logistics in order to make our processes both more secure and more productive.


We expect employee numbers to rise in 2019. The main reason is production-capacity expansion at WACKER SILICONES and WACKER POLYMERS in Asia and the USA. Prudent personnel planning will remain a priority.


WACKER’s sustainability goals for the next few years are described in the Non-Financial Report. In 2019, the regional focus of WACKER’s sustainability management activities will be on Europe, where we will examine environmental, health and safety aspects at individual sites. In 2019, WACKER will be publishing its Sustainability Report for 2017-2018.

Silica, Pyrogenic
White, synthetic, amorphous silicon dioxide (SiO2) in powder form, made by flame hydrolysis of silicon compounds. Variously used as an additive for silicone rubber grades, sealants, surface coatings, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.
General term used to describe compounds of organic molecules and silicon. According to their areas of application, silicones can be classified as fluids, resins or rubber grades. Silicones are characterized by a myriad of outstanding properties. Typical areas of application include construction, the electrical and electronics industries, shipping and transportation, textiles and paper coatings.
After oxygen, silicon is the most common element in the earth’s crust. In nature, it occurs without exception in the form of compounds, chiefly silicon dioxide and silicates. Silicon is obtained through energy-intensive reaction of quartz sand with carbon and is the most important raw material in the electronics industry.
Silanes are used as monomers for the synthesis of siloxanes or sold directly as reagents or raw materials. Typical applications include surface treatment, agents (medically active substances) in pharmaceutical synthesis, and coupling agents for coatings.
A polymer is a large molecule made up of smaller molecular units (monomers). It contains between 10,000 and 100,000 monomers. Polymers can be long or ball-shaped.
Polymers that exhibit almost perfectly elastic behavior, i. e. they deform when acted upon by an external force and return to their exact original shape when the force is removed. While the duration of the force has no effect on perfectly elastic behavior, the temperature does.
Binary system in which one component is finely dispersed in another. VINNAPAS® dispersions are vinyl-acetate-based copolymers and terpolymers in liquid form. They are mainly used as binders in the construction industry, e. g. for grouts, plasters and primers.
A colorless, slightly sweet-smelling gas that, under normal conditions, is lighter than air. It is needed as a chemical starting product for a great many synthetic materials, including polyethylene and polystyrene. It is used to make products for the household, agricultural and automotive sectors, among others.
Cyclodextrins belong to the family of cyclic oligosaccharides (i. e. ring-shaped sugar molecules). They are able to encapsulate foreign substances such as fragrances and to release active ingredients at a controlled rate. WACKER BIOSOLUTIONS produces and markets cyclodextrins.
Hyperpure polycrystalline silicon from WACKER POLYSILICON is used for manufacturing wafers for the electronics and solar industries. To produce it, metallurgical-grade silicon is converted into liquid trichlorosilane, highly distilled and deposited in hyperpure form at 1,000 ° C.
Biotech processes use living cells or enzymes to transform or produce substances. Depending on the application, a distinction is made between red, green and white biotechnology. Red biotechnology: medical and pharmaceutical applications. Green biotechnology: agricultural applications. White biotechnology: biotech-based products and industrial processes, e. g. in the chemical, textile and food industries.

todo Vorjahresvergleich