MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF and Genomatica have expanded the scope of their license agreement for the production of 1,4-butanediol (BDO) based on renewable feedstock (renewable BDO) using Genomatica's patented process, the companies announced.
The parties added certain countries in Southeast Asia to their initial agreement, which focused on North America. The license agreement allows BASF to build a world-scale production facility that will use the Genomatica process to manufacture renewable BDO. BASF has secured rights to allow production of up to 75,000 tpy, the company said.
Under the terms of the agreement, Genomatica will continue to advance its patented GENO BDO process technology for the production of renewable BDO. The process, which includes a single-step fermentation, can be based on dextrose or sucrose as renewable feedstock. The companies agreed not to disclose financial details of the license contract.
BASF has produced commercial volumes of renewable BDO, offering it to customers for testing and commercial use. The quality of this BDO is comparable to petrochemical-based BDO, the company says. BASF also expanded its portfolio by producing and offering polytetrahydrofuran (PolyTHF(R)) made from renewable BDO.
BDO and its derivatives are used for producing plastics, solvents, electronic chemicals and elastic fibers for the packaging, automotive, textile, and sports and leisure industries, among others. BASF currently produces BDO and BDO equivalents at its sites in Ludwigshafen, Germany; Geismar, Louisiana; Chiba, Japan; Kuantan, Malaysia; and Caojing, China.
BASF announced it would increase its global capacities for BDO to 650,000 metric tons and for PolyTHF to 350,000 metric tons by the end of 2015, and beginning of 2016, respectively.
As MRC informed earlier, BASF has begun its first production of diphenylmethane diisocyanate (MDI) at its wholly-owned site in Chongqing, China. Production will be ramped up gradually in line with market demand.
BASF is the largest diversified chemical company in the world and is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries. BASF had sales of over EUR74 billion in 2014 and over 113,000 employees as of the end of the year.