Praxair and Bayer / H.C. Starck Enter Into Alliance To Develop and Supply CMP Slurries To Semiconductor Market

Praxair and Bayer / H.C. Starck Enter Into Alliance To Develop and Supply CMP Slurries To Semiconductor Market

June 25, 2003

DANBURY, Conn., June 25, 2003 — Praxair, Inc. (NYSE:PX), and the H.C. Starck GmbH, an affiliate company of Bayer AG, have formed an alliance to develop, manufacture and supply colloidal silica slurries for the semiconductor chemical mechanical planarization (CMP) market. The market for CMP slurries for semiconductor applications is estimated to be about $350 million in 2003 and is expected to grow at an annual growth rate of 20% over the next five years. The slurries will be marketed and sold globally by Praxair Electronics.

Praxair has been a leading supplier of polishing slurries for the hard-disk data storage and ophthalmic lens markets since 1985, with a manufacturing capacity of 8,000 metric tons per year in Indianapolis, Indiana. In addition to polishing slurries, Praxair produces polishing belts for the CMP market and operates a class 10 CMP polishing lab in Indianapolis to develop, test and customize slurries and polishing media for the semiconductor market.  

Bayer was one of the first companies to develop and produce colloidal silica and it has been supplying colloidal silica under the brand name Levasil® for more than 40 years. The annual production capacity of its Leverkusen, Germany facility achieves a five-figure metric ton output making this installation the largest colloidal silica plant in Europe.

Levasil® slurries have been supplied to the silicon wafer polishing market for more than 20 years. Bayer/H.C. Starck have developed a range of products for CMP that covers almost all polishing and planarization steps in semiconductor manufacturing. In 1998, Bayer invested in a dedicated plant for production of CMP slurries with an annual capacity of 5,000 metric tons.

By combining the polishing technology, production and distribution capabilities of Praxair Electronics and H.C. Starck, we substantially enhance our ability to provide value-added polishing solutions to the semiconductor market,” said Mark Gruninger, vice president of Praxair Electronics. “Leveraging the expertise of both companies, we will improve our ability to develop products with a low cost of ownership and to commercialize polishing slurries through Praxair Electronics global sales and marketing organization,” said Dr. Aloys Eiling, Marketing Manager Electronic Chemicals for H.C. Starck.

Praxair Electronics provides the global semiconductor industry with process consumables, including a full line of gases and materials; sputtering targets and CMP slurries; on-site services; chamber components including electrostatic chucks; and spare parts logistics services.  In 2002, Praxair’s sales to the global electronics industry were $420 million. For more information, visit Praxair Electronics at:

Within Bayer, H.C. Starck is an international group of companies with more than 3,400 employees at 16 production sites in Europe, North America and the Far East. Widely known for its technology in refractory metals and ceramics, H.C. Starck has been a subsidiary of Bayer AG since 1986 and on January 1, 2002 Bayer transferred its Electronic Chemicals Business Unit to H.C. Starck GmbH headquartered in Goslar, Germany and H.C. Starck, Inc. headquartered in Newton, Massachusetts. Among the products that were consolidated were the Levasil® Colloidal Silica slurries which are produced by H.C. Starck in Leverkusen, Germany.

Bayer is a globally leading life science and chemical company with a total turnover of more than

25 billion US$. The business activities are organized in four Business Pillars: HealthCare, CropScience, Polymers, and Chemicals. H.C. Starck is part of Bayer Chemicals.  More information about Bayer / H.C. Starck its organization and products is available on the Internet at and, respectively.

Praxair is the largest industrial gases company in North and South America, and one of the largest worldwide, with 2002 sales of $5.1 billion. The company produces, sells and distributes atmospheric and process gases, and high-performance surface coatings. Praxair products, services and technologies bring productivity and environmental benefits to a wide variety of industries, including aerospace, chemicals, food and beverage, electronics, energy, healthcare, manufacturing, metals and others. More information on Praxair is available on the Internet at

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