BASF increased spending on research and development to €1.8 billion (2012: €1.7 billion) in 2013.
“In absolute terms, we lead the field in the chemical industry with our research and development expenditures,” said Dr. Andreas Kreimeyer, member of the Board of Executive Directors of BASF SE and research executive director, at the research press conference on the topic ”Nanotechnology: Small dimensions – great opportunities” in Ludwigshafen.
BASF has a workforce of approximately 10,650 employees working in international and interdisciplinary teams on approximately 3,000 research projects to find answers to the challenges of the future and secure sustainable profitable growth for the company.
The innovative strength of BASF is demonstrated once more by sales of new products introduced onto the market within the past five years: Last year, these amounted to about €8 billion. In 2013 alone, the company launched more than 300 new products on the market.
The patent portfolio also reflects the success of the company’s research activities. With 1,300 patents filed last year and about 151,000 registrations and intellectual property rights worldwide, BASF is at the top of the Patent Asset Index for the fifth time in succession.
In future, BASF is expecting strong impulses from the regions for its innovation pipeline. By 2020, 50% of its research activities are to be conducted outside Europe. In 2013, BASF came another step closer to this goal and increased the proportion of its research outside Europe to 28% (2012: 27%). To drive the globalization of research further forward, the company has, among other things, established six new laboratories at different locations in Asia and the U.S.
In cooperation with highly innovative universities, BASF has founded the California Research Alliance by BASF (CARA) in California. Here, the main research focus is on the biosciences and new inorganic materials for the areas energy, electronics and renewable resources. In Asia, the company has, for example, joined forces with top-ranking universities from China, Japan and Korea to found the research initiative Network for Advanced Materials Open Research (NAO). In this joint project, research is underway on materials for a wide range of applications, including products for the automotive, construction and water industries and for the wind energy sector. BASF collaborates in a global network with more than 600 universities, research institutes and companies.
Nanotechnology is concerned with the development, manufacture and use of materials that have structures, particles, fibers or platelets smaller than 100 nanometers and so possess novel properties. Many innovations in areas such as automotive technology, energy, electronics or construction and medicine would not be possible without nanotechnology. BASF uses this technology to develop new solutions and improve existing products.