Surface Technologies

The Surface Technologies segment comprises the Catalysts and Coatings divisions, which offer chemical solutions for surfaces. Its portfolio serves industries such as the automotive and chemical sectors and includes automotive OEM and refinish coatings, surface treatment, catalysts, battery materials, and precious and base metal services. We improve our customers’ applications and processes with tailored products, technologies and solutions, and support them through geographical proximity across all regions. The aim is to drive BASF’s growth by leveraging our portfolio of technologies and expanding our position as a leading and innovative provider of battery materials and surface coatings solutions.




StarBloc® is a continuously developed thin-film primer technology from BASF that can make a significant contribution to more efficient, sustainable and profitable automotive coatings. StarBloc® enables paint to be applied with a reduced film thickness of just 20 μm instead of 30 μm. It also offers advantages in the application process, such as a reduced number of application robots, which also saves solvents and cleaning efforts. This means that automotive manufacturers can save a third of the materials required compared with a standard series primer. For OEMs, lower material consumption also leads to a reduction in their CO2 emissions and lower logistics costs. These environmental and process advantages are convincing automotive manufacturers around the world to switch to StarBloc®. BASF therefore expects annual sales of this product to increase fivefold to more than €20 million as early as 2023 compared with baseline 2021.

Discover StarBloc® at


Factors influencing sales

EBIT before special items


2 Adjusted figure excluding sales in precious metal trading and precious metal sales in the automotive catalysts business: 3.9%

Million €

2022 2021 2020 2019
Sales to third parties 21,283 22,659 16,659 13,142
Adjusted sales to third parties1 8,947 6,933
Share of total BASF sales (%) 24 29 28 22

of which Catalysts

17,062 19,219 13,570 9,396


4,220 3,440 3,089 3,746
Income from operations before depreciation, amortization and special items 1,464 1,277 966 1,173
Adjusted EBITDA margin before special items1 (%) 16.4 18.4
Income from operations before depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) 1,264 1,243 900 1,120
EBITDA margin (%) 5.9 5.5 5.4 8.5
Income from operations (EBIT) before special items 902 800 484 722
EBIT before special items margin (%) 4.2 3.5 2.9 5.5
Income from operations (EBIT) 612 761 –587 663
EBIT margin (%) 2.9 3.4 –3.5 5.0
Return on capital employed (ROCE) (%) 3.9 5.6 –4.8 5.7

1 Adjusted figures excluding sales in precious metal trading und precious metal sales in the automotive catalysts business have been reported since 2021.

Last Update May 26, 2023