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Lehigh Technologies Launches Dedicated Polyurethane Technical Team

Addition of senior polyurethane chemist will help accelerate adoption of lower cost, sustainable MRPs in growing market

ATLANTA, Ga. – May 21, 2014 – Lehigh Technologies, a leading specialty materials company that produces micronized rubber powders (MRP), today announced that it has bolstered its best-in-class research and development capabilities with the appointment of Rick Speas as Technical Manager for Polyurethanes (PU). Speas, a 30-year industry veteran, will lead the customer-facing polyurethane application development team at Lehigh’s Application and Development Center (ADC).

“The global polyurethane market is expected to grow significantly over the next five years, and Lehigh’s MRP is ideally suited to meet the industry’s needs,” said Alan Barton, CEO of Lehigh Technologies. “More than 70 million PU components have already been manufactured using Lehigh’s MRP, and this latest addition to the technical team enables us to drive further adoption of lower cost, sustainable, high-performance MRPs into these applications.”

Speas joins the company with extensive experience developing PU systems for a range of applications. Previously, he worked as technical director at some of the world’s largest PU manufacturers, including Tempur-Sealy, Rubberlite, Uniroyal and Foamex. In addition to leading the polyurethane application development team at Lehigh, Speas will be responsible for the construction and operation of Lehigh’s polyurethane laboratory.

“Having previously served as a Lehigh customer, I’m very familiar with MRPs and their benefits for polyurethane applications,” said Speas. “I’m looking forward to joining the ADC team, where I can help reinforce peer-level technical relationships with major component producers and explore opportunities to further advance this key market segment.” 

Initially, Lehigh will focus on developing PU applications for the automotive, flooring and apparel industries. This hire follows an ADC expansion in January 2014, when Lehigh added Chad Jasiunas as Technical Manager for Functional Materials and invested in new mixing and analytical equipment.

Lehigh’s proprietary MRPs lower costs, increase the sustainability profile of end products and deliver performance without sacrificing the reliability and performance offered by traditional raw materials.

About Lehigh Technologies
Lehigh Technologies is a leading specialty materials company that produces high-performance micronized rubber powders (MRP), a lower cost, high-performance, sustainable specialty material that replaces oil-based materials to reduce costs and cut waste. Lehigh's cryogenic turbo mill technology breaks down end-of-life tires and other post-industrial rubber into micron-scale powders used in a wide range of consumer and industrial applications, including high-performance tires, industrial rubber, consumer and industrial plastics goods, asphalt and coatings and construction materials. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Lehigh is privately held and backed by Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Index Ventures, NGP Energy Technology Partners and Leaf Clean Energy. To learn more, visit www.lehightechnologies.com.

ABOUT LEHIGH TECHNOLOGIES

Lehigh Technologies is a leading specialty chemicals company that produces high-performance micronized rubber powders (MRP), a sustainable specialty material that replaces oil-based materials to reduce costs. Lehigh's cryogenic turbo mill technology converts end-of-life tires and other post-industrial rubber into micron-scale powders used in a wide range of consumer and industrial applications. Customers include more than 60 leading tire, asphalt and plastics companies around the world. To learn more, visit lehightechnologies.com.

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