rCB News November 2023


rCB News November 2023

Dear colleagues & friends of recovered Carbon Black,

Here is your November dose of recovered Carbon Black news.

We now have 6.274 (!) subscribers. Thank you for your interest in the circular economy!

The picture above shows 350+ happy conference participants in Barcelona, a happy conference sponsor (Marc Giersemehl from NEUMAN & ESSER (NEA GROUP)) and a very happy conference founder and chair (me).

In the November edition we talk about :

  • rCB23 Conference in Barcelona
  • Follow-up topics emerging from rCB23
  • Events in 2024

rCB23 Conference in Barcelona

rCB23 in Barcelona was a blast! Together with Smithers, I have been building this forum and community since 2018. In 2023 we had more than 350 participants in the main conference and 70 participants in the pre-conference workshop.

rCB23 participant structure

38% were rCB suppliers (or aspiring suppliers, contact me!), 15% were rCB buyers, 9% were machine and engineering companies, 9%  were from the carbon black industry (hello colleagues!), 6% were from the oil & petro industry, 5% were service providers, 4% were ELT recycling companies and (only) 1% were investors.

Pre-conference rCB Workshop

In the 3h pre-conference rCB Workshop I had support from my friends and colleagues Shane Perl (Alpen Group) and Paul Ita (Notch Consulting, Inc. ). we covered carbon black, recovered carbon black and, as a bonus, also tire pyrolysis oil.

New rCB classification system from ASTM D36

All presentations contributed to the industry progress and industry collaboration, but my personal favourite was Pieter ter Haar‘s ASTM D36 presentation, showing for the first time in public the ASTM D36 classification system for recovered carbon black.

I am using this system already for consulting clients and I am working with two laboratories who can run these four analyses required for determining the rCb grade.

For the first time, buyers can state which rCB grade they require and producers then know exactly what to deliver. The system will help commoditise rCB, which is needed for large scale industrialisation.

My other favourite was the CEO panel lead by Katie Tuttle (Cabot Corporation), where Thomas Sorensson (Scandinavian Enviro Systems AB (publ)), Michael Murray CDir, FIoD ( Bolder Industries), Robert Harper (Circtec Germany GmbH) and Pascal Klein (Pyrum Innovations AG) discussed the current situation of the industry. I think this was the best CEO panel in 5 years, with CEOs not selling their companies, but exchanging about the industry.

My Call-to-Action in the rCB23 Conference opening

Mentioned in my opening and also by the CEOs in the CEO panel, the industry needs investors. Robert Harper said that he sees the most potential in strategic industrial capital, meaning investments coming from big tire, big petro or big carbon black companies.

As a personal highlight at the end of the rCB23 Conference, I reviewed the conference sessions and closed the conference together with Jorge Lacayo Pineda from Continental, who is a key contributor to ASTM D36 and who chaired two sessions in Day 2.

Follow-up topics emerging from rCB23

For me, the major follow-up topic from rCB23 is the lack of investment into industrial production assets for recovered carbon black. Because of that you see me posting about this topic here on Linkedin and many of my friends and colleagues have chimed in with comments on these posts:

💸 Buy or invest??
⚫️ Take 2 on the rCB investment dilemma . . .
🫣 The recovered Carbon Black investment dilemma
The Wolfersdorff Consulting Berlin due diligence system for investments into rCB

I am currently in contact with major investors interested in the recovered carbon black industry. My due diligence system includes 31 hard criteria plus the Organisational Character Index (“OCI”) as a soft criterium. I am currently introducung selected and qualified rCB companies to investors.

Events in 2024

As a business partner of Smithers, I am already involved in the planning of future carbon black conferences. After the conference is before the conference!

In 2024, we will have 3 Smithers conferences on carbon black:

  1. Carbon Black World 2024 (Vienna, May 14th – 16th 2024)
  2. recovered Carbon Black China (TBA, September 2024)
  3. recovered Carbon Black Europe 2024 (TBA, November 2024)

Meet me on these 3 leading carbon black conferences!

In my event calendar are also:

  • Tire Technology Expo (Hannover, March 19th – 21st 2024)
  • ETRA European Tyre Recycling Association Conference (Brussels, April 17th – 19th 2024)

I will be live streaming and interviewing my industry contacts on those two events. Interested? Contact me!

PS: I will also start filming my recovered Carbon Black Documentary Film in 2024! My plan is to have the documentary film ready for viewing at the rCB24 Europe Conference!


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Take care, best wishes from snowy Berlin,