Interview with Mr Henry Roth

Mr Henry Roth
Mr Henry Roth
President & CEO
MEGlobal International FZE
MEGlobal International FZE

MEGlobal International FZE is a world leader in the manufacture and marketing of merchant monoethylene glycol (MEG) and diethylene glycol (DEG), collectively known as ethylene glycol (EG). Established in July 2004, the company is a joint venture between The Dow Chemical Company and Petrochemical Industries Company of Kuwait (PIC), and is currently headquartered in Dubai, UAE. With approximately 200 employees worldwide, the company serves customers around the world, and has production facilities in Fort Saskatchewan and Red Deer, Alberta, Canada. Mr Henry Roth, a Swiss citizen with a business degree and a Swiss Commercial Diploma, is the President and Chief Executive Officer of MEGlobal. Prior to MEGlobal, Mr Roth served as senior Vice President in EQUATE* Petrochemical Company for five years based in Kuwait. He represented Dow’s interest within EQUATE, a second joint venture between Dow and PIC, and shared executive responsibility within the Office of the CEO. He also served as President of the EQUATE Marketing Company leading the commercial business groups, as well as supply chain, human resources and corporate relations. Mr Roth joined Dow in 1977, and held a series of leadership roles in sales, marketing, purchasing and business management in a variety of plastics, chemicals and hydrocarbons businesses in Dow, including international assignments in Europe, Africa and North America. In 1993, he became Business Manager, polystyrene in Europe and in 1996, moved to the hydrocarbons & energy business as Business Director, olefins, Europe. In 1999, he was named Dow’s global purchasing director for raw materials chemicals before moving to EQUATE in 2001. In a talk with Face2Face team, Mr Henry Roth provides a closer look on current moves in polyester market world over.

MEGlobal has completed its four years of JV with Dow and Kuwait’s PIC. How far has this venture met it’s underneath expectations?

MEGlobal will actually celebrate five years of operation in 2009, as a joint venture which combines Dow's strong existing asset base, technology position and market presence with PIC's commitment to increasing its investment in downstream petrochemical markets.

Since the company’s launch in 2004, we have proven the capabilities of a global commodity business model that combines the strengths of regional industries so that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, providing our customers with a consolidation of diverse and authoritative expertise that they cannot get from any other supplier. And one which has, I believe, exceeded the expectations of both our parent companies in its sole focus and success by being a world leader in the Ethylene Glycol (EG) industry.

Can you apprise us with the products MEGlobal offers for textile and allied sector, and its market share in this industry?

MEGlobal has a sole focus on everything in EG. We are a world leader in the manufacture, supply and marketing of merchant monoethylene glycol (MEG) and diethylene glycol (DEG), collectively known as ethylene glycol (EG). We manufacture and sell around 1.0 million metric tonnes of EG per year produced at our three manufacturing plants in Canada and in addition, market in excess of 2.5 million metric tonnes from our world-leading supply partners, Dow, EQUATE Petrochemical Company and Optimal Glycols.

Quota elimination had ignited textile trade dissentions amongst recusants viz China and US as well as Europe. Has this situation caused any adverse impact on polyester demand or market as a whole?

Trade frictions are inherently negative for a business tied to and committed to global trade and exchange of goods. While we have not seen pronounced changes in market demand, fluctuations have occurred as polyester producers are coping with changed regulatory requirements pertaining to export and import.

Crude oil prices are known for volatility. Ever fluctuating as they are, so are their consequences on down stream producers. What say? As an antidote to such a milieu, which strategy can be devised to materialize the business?

The recent months have demonstrated the volatility more drastically than ever before and this volatility has created severe strains in the margin generation capability of all participants of the product stream. The volatility does not always allow adjusting pricing to the changed cost structure, therefore making planning at sustainable or reinvestment levels is very difficult for the participants in our business.

Published on: 13/10/2008

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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