Avantium reaches financial close for construction of its FDCA flagship plant in Netherlands

Avantium reaches financial close for construction of its FDCA flagship plant in Netherlands

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Avantium N.V., announces that it has reached financial close for the construction of its FDCA flagship, plant in Delfzijl, the Netherlands, according to SpecialChem.

The world’s first commercial FDCA factory is set to produce 5 kilotonnes of FDCA (furandicarboxylic acid) per annum, the key building block for the 100% plant-based, recyclable polymer PEF (polyethylene furanoate).

Avantium CEO, Tom van Aken comments, “Reaching Financial Close is the culmination of a decade’s worth of hard work to bring Avantium’s lead product - PEF - to market.

"It is a huge step forward in bringing a new, revolutionary material to the market, and a milestone in the sustainability transition of the packaging, fibre and specialty markets,” adds Aken.

With financial close, engineering company Worley and the Groningen Consortium have become minority shareholders in the Avantium subsidiary Avantium Renewable Polymers, responsible for the FDCA flagship plant.

Furthermore, the €90 million debt financing package has been signed with the consortium of Dutch banks, comprising ABN AMRO Bank, ASN Bank, ING Bank and Rabobank, as well as with impact investment fund InvestNL. Avantium will now immediately start the construction of the FDCA Flagship Plant, planned to be completed by the end of 2023.

This will enable the commercial launch of PEF from 2024 onwards. On 9 December 2021, Avantium announced that it had taken a positive Final Investment Decision (FID) to construct the FDCA flagship plant, after obtaining, amongst other, sufficient financing. Worley and the Groningen Consortium together have acquired a 22.6% shareholding in Avantium Renewable Polymers, while Avantium continues to hold 77.4% of the equity.

As MRC informed before, in 2011, Avantium (Amsterdam) raised EUR 30 million, money it says it will use to develop and commercialize a next-generation polyester based on bioderived Furanics building blocks. Avantium will apply the funds to the construction and operation of its pilot plant in Geleen, the Netherlands, as well as to develop more green materials, including a polyamide, on the basis of its YXY building blocks.

Chemical distributor OQEMA strengthens its footprint in France

Chemical distributor OQEMA strengthens its footprint in France

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Founded in 1922, the OQEMA Group (Korschenbroich, Germany) celebrates its 100th anniversary this year and continues to expand its presence in Europe, according to firmenpresse.

We are proud to announce the acquisition of the Orosolv Group of companies based in Oyonnax, France, the French Plastics Valley (Ain) and in Brignais, near Lyon, with a total of over 20 employees, two warehouse locations, its own logistics, blending and repacking facilities. The company was founded in 2005 by Stephane Farissier and will be integrated in the future with OQEMA France, managed by Jean-Francois Daligault.

With this acquisition, the OQEMA Group is further expanding its infrastructure by focusing on the network expansion of its own warehouses. In addition, Orosolv’s focus on repackaging and the formulation of paints and solvents complements the existing offer perfectly and strengthens OQEMA's French market position as well as the OQEMA Group’s European presence.

Jean-Francois Daligault, Managing Director of OQEMA France, is looking forward to the expansion and development of the business in France: ‘The Orosolv Group with its warehouses, bulk storage, service facilities and its high level of technical expertise offers us great opportunities in the expansion of our portfolio and in value added services for our customers.’

As MRC informed earlier, in February 2022, Chemical distributor Oqema (Korschenbroich, Germany) says it has taken a majority stake in CB Chemie (Drassburg, Austria), a company founded in 2016 by Christian Braunshier. CB Chemie focuses on distributing specialty chemicals to the construction, and paints and coatings industry. It has a subsidiary, CB Nutrition, specialized in supplying natural ingredients to the food industry.

The OQEMA Group is one of the leading chemical distributors in Europe. Almost 1,300 employees currently work for OQEMA at 45 locations in 23 countries. At the interface between chemicals manufacturers and chemical-processing industries, the OQEMA Group provides pan-European services along the supply chains, which includes procurement, product development, individual mixing, logistics and recycling. The Group has specific expertise in the technical and regulatory support of its customers. OQEMA is also the exclusive distribution partner of various renowned producers. OQEMA offers a highly dynamic and continuously expanding product portfolio of more than 14,000 products.

Brightmark, Georgia county cancel plastic-to-fuel project

Brightmark, Georgia county cancel plastic-to-fuel project

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Brightmark Energy and a county in the U.S. state of Georgia scrapped plans to build "the world's largest" facility to turn plastic waste into fuel, according to a termination agreement published on Monday, a blow to a technology the petrochemical industry has promoted heavily, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Brightmark missed a deadline to deliver "end product" to customers from a similar facility in Indiana, a condition of its contract with the Macon-Bibb County Industrial Authority, which had planned to build a USD680 MM chemical recycling facility.

The project Brightmark described as the world's largest advanced recycling project was no longer "in the interest of either Company or Authority," according to the termination agreement signed by both parties this month and posted online by the Macon Newsroom newspaper.

Brightmark had said the Renewal Georgia project would use its pyrolisis technology to convert hard-to-recycle plastics, like films and styrofoam, into 64 MMg of low sulfur diesel fuel and naphtha blend stocks, and 20 MMg of wax. It aimed to divert 400,000 tpy of plastic waste from landfills and incinerators. Neither Brightmark nor the Macon Bibb County Industrial Authority were available for comment.

Months earlier, the mayor of Macon-Bibb county withdrew his support of the proposal, citing worries about safety of an "unproven process." Many advanced recycling projects have emerged in recent years in response to a global explosion of plastic waste. More than 90% gets dumped or incinerated because there is no cheap way to repurpose it, according to a landmark 2017 study in the journal Science Advances.

The project is the latest in a series of failed efforts to deploy chemical or advanced recycling technology at commercial scale to solve the world's burgeoning plastic waste problem. The petrochemical industry has touted this technology as a way to process all types of plastic, eliminating the expensive sorting and cleaning needed for traditional recycling. More than a dozen states have passed laws aiming to spur its development.

We remind, scientists from Nanyang Technological University have found a way to convert plastic waste into low-carbon hydrogen, which is considered a cleaner fuel than natural gas. The discovery, which could power vehicles and contribute to the power grid in as soon as three years, comes as the Republic looks to adopt hydrogen as an alternative fuel, as it does not produce carbon dioxide (CO2) when burned.

Plastic consumption is anticipated to double in the next two decades, after doubling in the prior five decades. To reduce environmental difficulties, the polymer industry must focus on recovering value-added goods rather than single-purpose plastics.

Perstorp to construct carboxylic acid plant in Sweden

Perstorp to construct carboxylic acid plant in Sweden

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Perstorp plans to have extra capacity of around 70,000 tonnes/year for production of carboxylic acids onstream during 2024. The investment will enable Perstorp to increase output significantly and strengthen its position as the sustainable solutions provider, according to SpecialChem.

Increased capacity will meet growing demand in various high-value applications, including non-phthalate plasticizers for PVC, engineered fluids for applications such as refrigeration lubricants, and various propionates used in food preservation and carboxylic acids for use in animal feed gut health and preservation products.

Most of the output will be used in downstream production operated by Perstorp itself. Perstorp will build a new plant on the site of its existing carboxylic acid production operation in Stenungsund, Sweden.

Like the original unit, it will be capable of producing acids from C3 to C9 chemistry, significantly strengthening the company’s portfolio. Both plants will be fully integrated into Perstorp’s Oxo production platform. The decision to go ahead with the capacity expansion comes during a period of high growth for Perstorp, which has maintained a strong position in its key markets despite disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Perstorp has a unique position among plasticizer producers in offering Pevalen™, a high-performance polyolester plasticizer, ideal for sensitive close-to-consumer applications such as coated fabric and films and sheets. Pevalen™ meets growing calls for new-generation plasticizers and has performance advantages over some of the most commonly used plasticizer solutions in terms of efficiency and UV stability.

Perstorp also uses carboxylic acids for its in-house production of various grades of food preservative (Profina CP) and animal feed preservative (ProSid MI 208). It is the only company in the world making these products with upstream integration. Valmira Ozten, vice president business manager for formates & propionates at Perstorp, says “the company is witnessing strong growth in demand for both Profina and ProSid.”

As a result, the company is planning to significantly increase production capacity for calcium propionate, which is currently located in Castellanza, near Milan, Italy. New capacity could be onstream in early 2024. Various sites are under consideration. Perstorp markets its calcium propionates in numerous countries around the world.

As MRC reported previously, in December 2021, Perstorp, the world leader in the production of Trimethylolpropane (TMP), ramped up the capacity to meet growing demand from the European market. TMP is used to enhance the properties of numerous materials. Common applications include the use in saturated polyesters for coil coatings, polyurethanes for coatings and elastomers, acrylic acid esters for radiation curing, esters for synthetic lubricants, and for the surface treatment of pigments.

Perstorp Specialty Chemicals AB is a subsidiary of Perstorp Holding AB. The company was founded in 1881 and is based in Perstop, Sweden. Perstorp Specialty Chemicals AB manufactures chemical products. The company offers base and specialty polyols, formates, organic acids and formaldehyde products.

Phillips 66 announces CEO transition plans

Phillips 66 announces CEO transition plans

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Phillips 66 has named its current President and Chief Operating Officer, Mark Lashier, as President and Chief Executive Officer effective July 1, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Lashier will succeed Greg Garland, who will remain as Executive Chairman of the Board of Directors until he retires in 2024. Garland has led Phillips 66, which is headquartered in Houston, for the past 10 years.

“Greg’s leadership and commitment to Phillips 66, our employees and our investors have been invaluable,” said Glenn Tilton, lead Independent Director on the Phillips 66 Board of Directors and chair of the Board’s Nominating and Governance Committee. “He embodies our values of safety, honor and commitment and our vision to provide energy and improve lives."

Since Garland assumed the Chairman and CEO role in May 2012, Phillips 66 has recorded many notable achievements. Lashier joined Phillips 66 in April 2021 as President and Chief Operating Officer.

“Greg’s leadership in fostering a culture of operating excellence and financial strength will benefit us for decades,” Lashier said. “That foundation is critical as we face the opportunities and challenges of the next 10 years. I am excited to embark on this new role and leverage the talent of our team and the strength of our assets as we continue to deliver shareholder value."

We remind, Phillips 66 announced the completion of the previously announced merger between Phillips 66 Partners (PSXP) and Phillips 66. The merger resulted in Phillips 66 acquiring all limited partnership interests in PSXP not already owned by Phillips 66 and its affiliates. Partnership unitholders received 0.50 shares of PSX common stock for each outstanding PSXP common unit, including preferred units that were converted into common units at a premium prior to closing.

Phillips 66 is a diversified energy manufacturing and logistics company. With a portfolio of Midstream, Chemicals, Refining, and Marketing and Specialties businesses, the company processes, transports, stores and markets fuels and products globally. Headquartered in Houston, the company has 14,000 employees committed to safety and operating excellence.