Specialty chemicals maker Clariant AG is moving its Textile Chemicals Business Unit (BU) to Singapore in a move designed to take its management team to the heart of the world's main textile markets and closer to global customers.

The relocation of the unit's headquarters to Singapore is due to be completed by mid 2011, Clariant said today (15 October). Caught up in the move is the entire senior textile chemicals management team and the global textile application technology team.

Meanwhile, the application development laboratory for technical textiles and finishing will be relocated to Muttenz, near Basel in Switzerland, together with the 60 people who make up the business unit's European sales and marketing operation.

"Singapore is the optimum location from which to serve the key global textile markets across India, China and South East Asia," explained Thomas Winkler, head of Clariant's Textile Chemicals Business Unit.

"Positioning our management team close at hand will further strengthen our customer relationships and enhance our ability to respond quickly to the trends of this dynamic sector."

He added: "At the same time, Europe remains an important market for Clariant and our European textile customers will continue to be served by our dedicated, well-established infrastructure located in the region."

Clariant is one of the leading manufacturers of textile chemicals and textile dyes, with ranges for textile finishing, including dyeing and printing, fibre, finishing and pre-treatment.

The changes at its Textile Chemicals Business Unit are part of a company-wide reorganisation across several divisions that is set to lead to the loss of 100 jobs worldwide.