Barton is responsible for the company's $1.7 billion global Coatings business.
Barton reviewed the company's 2001 performance and discussed market factors and trends that will influence the company's performance in 2002. He said that Rohm and Haas' cost reduction efforts should allow the company to report improved operating earnings, even without significant improvement in external market demand.
Barton said that the need for advanced technology remains a key driver for the global coatings industry. "This is true in established markets like North America and Europe, but it's just as valid in emerging economies in Asia and Latin America." He also noted that consolidation trends in the industry have resulted in a need for suppliers who can provide consistent technology on a global scale, yet help paint manufacturers create customized paint and coatings formulations in order to satisfy local market needs driven by weather, custom and fashion. He noted that Rohm and Haas is up to that challenge, given the breadth of its technology, along with the depth of experience in serving the paint market needs. He also noted the company's ability to leverage technology into a wide variety of end-use markets, including textiles, nonwovens, paper, graphic arts and leather, as well as industrial and automotive applications.