As a materials technology company, the future success and sustainability of our business depend on our ability to develop and market innovative products and services. We strive to meet the needs of a rapidly changing world and continuously search for new solutions for our customers.
Technology is at the core of our success. From production and process technology, to deep knowledge of metallurgy and materials science, we develop a significant part of our technology using Umicore research and development findings. Umicore also develops technology in collaboration with industrial or academic partners and, where appropriate, we protect our intellectual property with patents.
We are committed to innovation to maintain our competitive lead and Research & Development is a key component of innovation-led growth. Every year, we invest from 5% to 7% of revenues in R&D efforts carried out in 14 research and technical centres worldwide. The main focus is on developing technologies that address key global challenges such as clean mobility and resource scarcity.
We have prioritised our R&D programmes to support our Horizon 2020 ambitions with a focus on the development of innovative materials and processes.
General Our main contribution to a more sustainable world centres on the products and services we provide to our worldwide customer base. The areas where we can make the most telling contributions are:
Resource scarcity: in today's world, metals are in greater demand but are becoming ever scarcer. Umicore's recycling capabilities recover more than 20 elements including precious and other metals.
Clean air: worldwide efforts towards stricter emissions standards provide global growth opportunities in automotive catalysts, for both light- and heavy-duty vehicles.
Vehicle electrification: the growing market for lithium ion batteries is driving demand for our rechargeable battery cathode materials.