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May 13, 2009

Takeover looks to build on past success of polyurethane industry events

Crain Communications, London-based publisher of Urethanes Technology International magazine and co-creator of the UTECH concept, has assumed full control of the polyurethane industry events.
“The move was prompted by the retirement of Tony Kenter – owner of Industrial Promotions International BV (IPI), of Goor, the Netherlands, and co-creator of the Utech events – on reaching his 65th birthday, as specified in the original contracts establishing the joint venture,” explained Paul Mitchell, managing director of Crain's London operation.

No financial details were revealed, and IPI will continue to operate independently under its own management, with Crain taking full responsibility for all aspects of the UTECH and PU events throughout the world.

Since 1986, the two partners have combined resources to organise a series of major exhibitions and international conferences for the polyurethanes sector, with great success through regular events in Europe, Asia, China, Latin America and, more recently North America.

The handover came following the UTECH Europe 2009 event in Maastricht, the Netherlands, but has been under discussion for some time, according to Mitchell, who explained: “Back in 1984, when discussions on the concept first began, Crain Communications saw itself as a magazine publisher and had limited knowledge of the exhibition world.

“We were pleased to sign an agreement with Tony Kenter’s IPI BV company, who had extensive experience of exhibition organization,” Mitchell added.

The combination proved to be highly effective. The first UTECH event, held in 1986 in the Hague, the Netherlands, was a resounding success: more than 1,800 people visited this event, with over 500 attending the three-day conference.

The creation of this event helped the polyurethanes industry recognise that, for the first time in its history, it had an identity and wasn’t just some odd, isolated part of the rubber or plastics industries.

The value of this concept in bringing all components of the polyurethanes industry together is now well recognised and, with the latest move, UTECH looks set for a solid future under the direct management of Crain Communications, the leading global communication specialist in the polymer sector.

Apart from its Urethanes Technology International magazine and the recently launched regular editions of Urethanes Technology North America, Crain publications in the sector include Plastics News, Rubber and Plastics News and Tire Business in North America, with Plastics and Rubber Weekly and European Plastics News in Europe.

“The strength of this combination is undoubted,” Mitchell said, “even in these difficult times, the UTECH Europe 2009 event attract more than 2,500 polyurethane specialists, all keen to find a profitable way forward for their companies, despite the current situation.

“Under the unified control now created, we are confident that the value of this event will continue to grow, alongside the world’s most dynamic and versatile polymer technology."

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