Global Bioenergies, French biotech compamy that is developing a process to convert renewable resources into hydrocarbons through fermentation, announces having obtained a 4.4 million euro loan from a consortium managed by BNP Paribas, Société Générale, CIC and Bpifrance to complete the financing of its demo plant in Germany. The loan, reimbursable over 5 years, is covered by guarantee funds of the Ile-de-France Region. The construction phase began yesterday and will last one year.
These past two years have seen Global Bioenergies focusing on scaling up its bio-production process to isobutene. A first phase has consisted in the construction of an industrial pilot on the agro-industrial site of Pomacle-Bazancourt. Successful start-up was achieved in 2014 and the pilot is now fully operational.
The following phase consists in the installation of a demo plant on the petrochemical site of Leuna, near Leipzig in Germany. Global Bioenergies has recently announced having received the corresponding engineering package.
The new financing will cover the purchase of a complete fermentation unit, comprising an inoculation fermenter, a propagation fermenter, and a 5,000L production fermenter. Each are fully instrumented and surrounded by satellite vessels. This unique installation has been specifically designed for the production of gaseous hydrocarbons. It will be installed on the Fraunhofer CBP site within the Leuna refinery. The demo plant’s operation will begin in 2016 under the supervision of Global Bioenergies GmbH, a Leipzig-based, 100%-owned subsidiary of Global Bioenergies SA.
The demo plant’s financing is also supported by a 5.7 million euro subsidy granted end 2013 by the German Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF). Most of this subsidy is still to be received.
Ales Bulc, General Manager of Global Bioenergies GmbH comments: “The construction phase of our demo plant now begins. It will be delivered in 2016. The first batches will be commercialized in specific niche markets and will also allow the qualification of our renewable isobutene in all its applications. Isobutene and its derivativestoday represent a 15 million tonne market globally.”
François-Henri Sahakian, Global Bioenergies’ Chief Financial Officer concludes: “This 4.4 million euro loan has been secured from several of France’s largest banks on the basis of the convincing results obtained on our pilot plant of Pomacle-Bazancourt. Accessing such a significant bank financing testifies of the level of trust Global Bioenergies now inspires to its partners.”