Imerys, the world leader in mineral-based specialties for industry, transforms, enriches and combines a unique range of minerals, often extracted from its deposits, to offer features essential to its customers’ products and production processes.Whether mineral components, functional additives, process enablers or finished products, Imerys’ solutions contribute to the quality of a great number of applications in consumer goods, industrial equipment or construction. Combining expertise, creativity and attentiveness to customers’ needs, the Group’s international teams constantly identify new applications and develop high value-added solutions under a determined approach to responsible development.

Company details

154 rue de l`Université, F , Paris , 75007 France

Locations Served

Memberships

Business Type:
Manufacturer
Industry Type:
Energy
Market Focus:
Globally (various continents)

The world leader in mineral-based specialty solutions for industry, Imerys transforms a unique range of minerals to deliver essential functions (heat resistance, mechanical strength, conductivity, coverage, barrier effect, etc.) that are essential to its customers' products and manufacturing processes.

Whether mineral components, functional additives, process enablers or finished products, Imerys’ solutions contribute to the quality of a great number of applications in consumer goods, industrial equipment or construction. Combining expertise, creativity and attentiveness to customers’ needs, the Group’s international teams constantly identify new applications and develop high value-added solutions under a determined approach to responsible development.

Business Model

'Imerys is a world leader with unique advantages. Present around the world, the Group serves a wide range of markets whose demand is evenly balanced between consumer spending and corporate investment. Nearly half of our businesses currently target 'growth markets', meaning emerging countries and high potential end markets.

Our specialty minerals are formulated to respond to the precise and demanding needs of our industrial customers. We therefore set our prices according to the value-added and service provided while striving to maintain our leadership positions. The development in our range of products and services is the cornerstone of our profitability and guarantees a good level of cash-flow generation.

This profitable and solid growth model means we are completely confident of the Group’s capacity to continue its development in the coming years.'

The world leader in mineral-based specialties for industry, Imerys transforms a large variety of minerals into high value specialty products for the industry using sophisticated technical processes.

The group draws on its knowledge of applications, technological expertise and command of materials science to beneficiate its mineral resources, develop formulations, and produce synthetic minerals. These deliver properties that are essential to its customers’ products and key to their performance, including refractoriness, mechanical resistance, conductivity, opacity, durability, purity, density, surface chemistry, filtration and adsorption.

Imerys is firmly committed to responsible development, in particular by fostering the emergence of environmentally friendly products and processes.

Imerys' solutions contribute to the performance of a large number of applications and address four types of use:

  • functional additives: they are added to the mineral formulation of customers’ products but constitute a minor part of the finished product properties; 
  • mineral components: they are an essential constituent in the formulation of the customer’s product;
  • process enablers: they are used in customers’ manufacturing processes but are not present in the end product;
  • finished products: they are used as such, with no subsequent processing by the customer.

A leading position in many markets across four operating divisions:

Energy Solutions & Specialties

  • Minerals for breathable polymer films
  • Ground calcium carbonate (GCC) for paper
  • Alumino-silicate monolithic refractories
  • Graphite for alkaline batteries
  • Conductive additives for Li-Ion batteries
  • Large natural graphite flakes

Filtration & Performance Additives

  • Talc for plastics, paints, paper, ceramics, health & beauty
  • Mica for engineered plastics and high performance coatings
  • Wollastonite for polymers, ceramics, paints & coatings
  • Diatomite-based products and perlite-based products for filtration
  • Casting Fluxes
  • Perlite for construction
  • Bentonite for metalcasting

Ceramic Materials

  • Kaolin for paper
  • Kaolin for fiberglass
  • Raw materials and ceramic bodies for sanitaryware
  • Raw materials and ceramic bodies for tableware
  • Raw materials for floor tiles
  • Clay roof tiles & kiln furniture for roofing tiles

High Resistance Minerals

  • Alumino-silicate minerals for refractories
  • Fused minerals for abrasives
  • Fused zirconia

We work to reduce our environmental impact and use natural resources efficiently through the adoption of management systems for the main environmental aspects of our activities.

  • We pump underground water to keep our quarries in good condition and use water to transform our minerals. The Group encourages the operations to reduce consumption, increase recycling and control the quality of water discharged.
  • Our activities produce relatively small quantities of industrial waste. This is because minerals are mainly converted by mechanical (e.g. grinding) and physical (e.g. density separation) processes.
  • Fuel use is the main source of CO2 emissions in the physical transformation of minerals. The Group aims to improve its energy efficiency and it is looking for ways to replace fossil fuels with alternative energies.
  • Oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and sulfur dioxide (SOx) are also emitted from the combustion of fuel in our conversion processes. Controls on the emissions of these materials are becoming stricter in many countries. We intend to be proactive with respect to those controls.
  • The surface area affected by mining is kept to a minimum and it is continuously restored whenever possible. In addition to the compensating measures taken, quarries offer many opportunities to enhance biodiversity, especially through their end-of-life remediation.

Imerys is an essential partner for its customers. As such, Imerys supports their Sustainable Development processes. The Group’s Research & Development team increasingly considers raw material savings and carbon footprint reduction when designing new products.

The key source of greenhouse gas emissions from our operations is our fuel use. For several years, we have implemented action programs to improve the energy efficiency of its industrial activities and, as a result, reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, Imerys’ activities may result in emissions of dust and particulates.

The Group considers the improvement of its energy efficiency as the main lever for reducing its greenhouse gas emissions. The use of thermal energy in mineral transformation operations (heating, drying, firing, sintering and calcining) is the main source of greenhouse gas emissions in the Group (54% of total). Indirect emissions relating to the consumption of electricity for production are the second largest source (38% of total). Finally, some of the processes used cause CO2 emissions themselves (8% of total), particularly through the decarbonation of raw materials. Imerys set itself the goal of improving energy efficiency by 10% over five years using 2009 as a baseline. The related reduction in CO2 emissions is reinforced by initiatives to use renewable energy sources in some of the Group’s units.

The work of the Energy team mainly focused on improving knowledge of the Group’s energy consumption and carbon emissions and setting up and tracking action plans undertaken on sites to improve process energy efficiency.

As far as dust emissions are concerned, our mining activities can generate fugitive dust emissions, which we control by measures such as spraying water on roads, installing sprinkler systems or planting vegetation.

In 2015, Imerys achieved its target with + 8.0% growth in net income from current operations to €342 million. This result, achieved in difficult overall market conditions, attests to the quality of the Group’s fundamentals and to its management discipline. The Group’s operating margin was firm at 13.2%. Group structure effect that includes S&B’s contribution and favorable exchange rate effect offset the slump in sales volumes on a number of our markets. Current operating income was also supported by a favorable trend in the activity mix and the effectiveness of cost reduction programs. The financial soundness of the Group was strengthened by high generation of current free operating cash flow at 343 M€.

This section presents Imerys' 2015 key figures and comments changes compared with the previous year:

2012 data has been reprocessed following the application, as of January 1, 2013, of the revised IAS 19 standard (Note 3.1 to the 2012 Registration Document) for the sake of data comparability.