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Commodity Chemicals

Industry Overview:

The differences between commodity, fine, and specialty chemicals can be likened to the differences between commodity crops like rice, delicacies like caviar, and Michelin star dishes: commodity chemicals are produced on a large scale for low prices, fine chemicals are manufactured in much smaller amounts sold for much higher prices, and specialty chemicals are compounds of fine and commodity chemical “ingredients” mixed together in specific proportions to serve one specific purpose.

Although many chemical companies have begun to move towards a more specialized portfolio, these fine and specialty chemicals will never fully be able to replace commodity chemicals – after all, you can’t cook award winning risotto without rice. Likewise, without the commodities as feedstock, no company would be able to produce their specialty offerings. In most instances, the sale and distribution of these basic chemicals comes down solely to market price – products are fungible, nearly indistinguishable from one supplier to the next, so cost is the biggest mitigating factor. As such, manufacturers of commodity chemicals must always be experimenting with ways to lower their production costs so that they are able to pass those savings on to their customers.

Common Applications:
  • Organic, inorganic
  • Industrial symbiosis
  • Organic synthesis
  • “Green” chemicals
  • Polymers – plastic, etc.
  • Bulk petrochemicals – intermediates, LPG, etc.
  • Synthetic rubber, etc.
  • Surfactants, etc.
  • Fertilizer – phosphates, ammonia, etc.
  • Inorganics – salt, chlorine, caustic soda, etc.
  • Continuous processing
  • Recycling, surplus stock, etc.
Look for our articles in Chemical & Engineering News and other industry publications..

With over 25 years as a top chemical industry recruitment agency, Ropella is well-versed in the challenges companies face in their search to find highly qualified professionals. As talent acquisition specialists, we excel at attracting, recruiting and building relationships with potential candidates. Our executive search consultants stay abreast of current industry trends making Ropella a knowledgeable, efficient and effective partner for recruiting top chemical talent.

A proven executive search firm, Ropella is dedicated to helping companies gain a competitive advantage by providing customized and strategic talent solutions. We leverage our industry expertise, proprietary smart search system and global network to deliver exceptional results quickly for even the most challenging searches. Successful industry leaders count on Ropella to find the right talent to drive their business forward.


The typical positions, roles and/or functions our search consultants serve include:

Sales (such as; new business development, key account management, technical service, customer service, branch, district, region, national, global in scope).
Marketing (such as market research, market analyst, consumer research, public relations, social media, communications, product management).
Manufacturing (such as operations, production, engineering, plant design, process development, pilot plant, scale up).
Research & Development (such as exploratory research, discovery research, synthesis, analytical, applications development, new product development, formulations, compounding, quality control, environmental, regulatory, health and safety).
Administration (such as procurement, supply chain, logistics, human resources).
Business Management (such as general management, executive, manager, director, vice president, c-suite and board member, commercial development, merger, acquisition, joint venture).
Venture Capital / Private Equity (such as administration and finance, commercial development, executive level management, human resources, mfg., marketing, r&d, sales)
We read and write for industry publications, including:
We participate in industry associations such as:
We regularly attend industry trade shows, including:
We have served and developed relationships with leading companies in the industry, including:
C&E News
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What sets Ropella apart from other search firms and recruiters?


For more information, contact:

Jeff Bennett

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In a very specialized industry like the cosmetic market, locating the right candidates having the right skills we needed was thought to be a difficult task.  However, due to the very sophisticated network capabilities that Ropella & Associates maintains…the team we have developed here at New Phase Technologies is impeccable.

Director of Market Operations
New Phase Technologies
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