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Novamont and Genomatica partner for European butanediol joint venture

Chemistry technology supplier Genomatica Inc. and bioplastics producer Novamont SpA have signed a definitive agreement to create a joint venture plant in Europe that will make butanediol (BDO) directly from renewable feedstocks.


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January 21, 2012 by Canadian Plastics

Chemistry technology supplier Genomatica Inc. and bioplastics producer Novamont SpA have signed a definitive agreement to create a joint venture plant in Europe that will make butanediol (BDO) directly from renewable feedstocks.

Italy-based Novamont will have a majority of the equity in the JV, and San Diego, Calif.-based Genomatica a minority interest. According to the companies, Novamont will consume the BDO for its own internal use to meet the increasing demand for its biopolymer products that incorporate BDO as a key monomer.

Under the agreement, Novamont is converting an existing facility in Adria, Italy to use Genomatica’s BDO process. Novamont is financing the plant conversion and will operate the plant, which is expected to have a production capacity of approximately 40 million pounds per year. Initial production is expected in 2013.

“Genomatica’s process technologies enable a new approach to chemical production – smaller-scale, capital-efficient manufacturing from renewable feedstocks that we believe fulfills customer needs across the value chain,” said Christophe Schilling, CEO of Genomatica.

The agreement also contemplates Novamont building and operating a second BDO plant using Genomatica’s process, which is expected to use biomass sugars as the renewable feedstock.