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Maire Tecnimont acquires control of new chemical recycling technology

Published by , Editorial Assistant
Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Maire Tecnimont S.p.A. has announced that its subsidiary, NextChem S.p.A., has signed an agreement with Biorenova S.p.A. to acquire, scale up and industrialise the proprietary CatC technology – a continuous chemical recycling process to recover monomers (building blocks for the plastic value chain) with ultra-high levels of purity from sorted plastic waste, particularly polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA, commonly plexiglass). NextChem intends to scale up CatC’s industrialisation in the plexiglass market, while progressively expanding its application to other value-added plastics, as this technology could also be suitable for the depolymerisation of polystyrene, a largely used plastic with numerous industrial applications from food packaging to electronics and automotive, among others. Moreover, further optimisation of the technology could address the even larger polyolefins market.

The CatC technology has been developed in the Abruzzo region (central Italy), where the first market development plant has already been built. Monomer samples have been fully validated by perspective off-takers. Once scaled up, CatC would provide a cost-effective, competitive alternative to other existing depolymerisation technologies for plexiglass, as the obtained monomers can be used directly without any further treatment. Biorenova S.p.A. is an innovative company engaged in the development of circular economy proprietary technologies, particularly in recovering materials through CatC technology, and hydrogen bioproduction.

NextChem will hold a 51% stake of a new company (NewCo) which will own the CatC technology. Biorenova will maintain the remaining 49%. Closing is expected to take place by 30 April 2023, subject to customary conditions. This acquisition is strategically significant since it allows the Group to expand its technological portfolio and enter new markets.

Expected revenues coming from such activity are expected to progressively grow to an overall value of €30 million by 2028. After this ramp-up period, yearly revenues are expected to be in the €15 – 20 million range.

NextChem, through the NewCo, will act as technology licensor, high-value process engineering and critical equipment provider.

Alessandro Bernini, Maire Tecnimont Group Chief Executive Officer, commented: “With this agreement we are further expanding the Group’s technological portfolio of depolymerisation technologies, following our experience in chemical recycling. We will progressively apply such innovative technology to several added-value markets. This is a further step for NextChem’s Circular District model, which integrates technologies for decarbonization and recycling, leveraging our existing leadership in the plastics value chain.”

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