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Bioamber announces world's first bio-based succinic acid plant: helping to reduce dependence on fossil fuels

PRINCETON, NJ, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire/ - DNP Green Technology and ARD are pleased to announce that their Bioamber joint venture has obtained the necessary permits and begun construction of the world's first production plant for bio-based succinic acid. The succinic acid plant will have an annual production capacity of 2,000 metric tons and will be integrated into an existing bio-refinery located in Pomacle, France. The plant, which is being financed by ARD at a cost of US $27m, will begin production in the fall of 2009. This technological milestone represents a significant step forward for renewable, bio-based chemistry and it will help reduce the world's dependence on fossil fuels.

Bioamber's production of bio-based succinic acid can use various renewable feedstocks such as wheat, corn, sugar cane, rice, lingo-cellulose and glycerin. Succinic acid and succinate esters can be used as building blocks in a multitude of markets including biopolymers, plastics, polyesters, resins, runway deicers, non-toxic solvents and renewable fuels (as a diesel additive).

The plant demonstrates the technological breakthrough of the US Department of Energy's proprietary E. coli bacterium, which is under exclusive license to DNP Green Technology and has been optimized by Bioamber. Bioamber's fermentation technology is cost competitive with the petrochemical processes. Bioamber's revolutionary platform also offers an important environmental advantage: it consumes CO(2), as opposed to equivalent petrochemical processes that emit greenhouse gases.

"This plant will showcase our technology at a commercial scale and prove our cost competitiveness with petrochemical feedstocks", said Patrick Piot, Bioamber's General Manager. Jean Francois Huc, President of DNP Green Technology, added: "This plant clearly demonstrates that Bioamber is the world leader in bio-based succinic acid and it will assist us in our ongoing work with a variety of industry partners seeking renewable, non-petroleum feedstocks for chemical and fuel markets."

DNP Green Technology and ARD are excited about this milestone and expect Bioamber to make important announcements in the coming months on new strategic partnerships, contract sales of bio-based succinic acid and the out-licensing of the technology platform to third parties through turn-key packages.

About ARD

ARD (Agro-Industrie Recherches et Developpements) is the R&D centre of the Champagne Ardenne agricultural cooperativesthat grow cereals, sugar, and alfalfa. Representative of the global-scale competitive cluster of agricultural industries and resources, ARD adds value to and finds new outlets for agricultural crops and develops innovative and competitive products that use the renewable carbon in plants after processing in a bio-refinery. Along with its affiliate SOLIANCE, which specializes in the production and commercialization of active ingredients for the cosmetics industry, and WHEATOLEO, a joint venture with OLEON in the market for surfactants of vegetable origin, ARD has 25 years of experience in the fractionation of plants, green chemistry, and white biotechnology. ARD and its affiliates have approximately 130 employees.

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About DNP Green Technology

DNP Green Technology is a private US company dedicated to the development of innovative technologies that use renewable biomass to produce green building blocks for the chemical industry that are cost competitive with fossil fuels. Thanks to its numerous scientific and business partnerships, DNP Green Technology has succeeded in building an extensive portfolio of patents and expertise in the production and purification of bio-based succinic acid and derivative products, as well as their use in various applications. DNP Green Technology has offices in Princeton, N.J., and Montreal, Canada.

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About Bioamber

Bioamber is a white biotechnology company dedicated to the production of bio-based succinic acid and derivatives. Bioamber is a joint venture established between DNP Green Technology and ARD.

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