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M&G Chemicals Launches Green Revolution in the Polyester Chain

SHANGHAI, Nov. 18, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- M&G Chemicals announces today its decision to construct a second-generation bio-refinery in the region of Fuyang, Anhui Province of China for the conversion of one million metric tons of biomass into bio-ethanol and bio-glycols.

The project is expected to be realized through a joint-venture with Chinese company Guozhen which will make available one million metric tons of straw biomass and use the lignin resulting as a by-product from the bio-refinery to feed a 45 MW cogeneration plant which will be constructed at the same time as the bio-refinery in the same site. M&G Chemicals will be majority partner of the bio-refinery and minority partner of the power plant.

The bio-refinery will employ PROESATM  technology licensed from Beta Renewables, a joint venture between Biochemtex (a company belonging to the Mossi Ghisolfi Group), US private equity fund TPG and Danish enzyme producer Novozymes.

The second-generation bio-refinery will be approximately four times the size (measured by volume of biomass processed) of that built by Beta Renewables in Crescentino, Italy, which was recently inaugurated.

The plant, which is expected to require capital expenditures of approximately half a billion US dollars, is expected to be brought on stream in mid 2015.

Necessary enzymes will be supplied by Novozymes, one of the world's largest enzymes producers and one of the partners in the Beta Renewables joint venture, which owns the rights of the PROESATM technology.

"This is the first act of a green revolution that M&G Chemicals is bringing to the polyester chain to provide environmental sustainability to both PET beverage packaging and polyester textile," said Mr. Marco Ghisolfi, CEO of M&G Chemicals. "The timing and scope of our green polyester revolution and our manufacturing entry in China from the green PET raw materials avenue is even more relevant considering The Coca-Cola Company has announced plans to use PlantBottle™ packaging, which is partially made from plants, for all of their PET plastic bottles across the globe by 2020," Marco Ghisolfi added.

"M&G Chemicals is today taking a big step towards a bio-based society where biomass is used for products like fuel, chemicals and plastics. We are incredibly excited to enable M&G Chemicals' vision of producing bio-plastics on a commercial scale and are looking forward to the long-term collaboration," says Thomas Videbaek, Executive Vice President and Head of Business Development in Novozymes.

"The second-generation bio-refinery and power cogeneration project is the core part of the Biomass Utilization Park that Guozhen plans to build in Fuyang City. Fuyang is rich in biomass resources; Guozhen is experienced in biomass collections and logistics; and M&G Chemicals owns the proven cutting-edge technology. Our cooperation will open a new era of biomass utilization and provide an effective solution for the full exploitation of biomass to tackle Chinese energy demand and environmental issues," said Mr. Li Wei, Chairman of Guozhen Group.

"Fuyang City is a large agricultural region in northwest Anhui Province. The crop planting area is up to 1.2 million hectares with 6 MMt/y of straw biomass available. The second-generation bio-refinery and power cogeneration projects planned by M&G Chemicals and Guozhen Group are technologically advanced, economically feasible and environmentally friendly. Fuyang City will provide full support to biomass collection, site selection, and land acquisition with incentive policies," said Mr. Lu Shiren, Standing Deputy Mayor of Fuyang City, Anhui Province.

About M&G Chemicals

M&G Chemicals is among the three largest producers of PET resin for packaging applications in the world, and the second largest in the Americas, in terms of nominal capacity with 1,600 kMT/year, and with almost 1.4 MMtons/year of installed prime capacity, and employs approximately 936 people in more than 14 locations in six countries around the world. In 2012 M&G Chemicals posted an annual revenue of 1,854 million Euro.

M&G Chemicals has manufacturing locations in Brazil, Mexico and the USA. Its plants in Suape (Brazil) and Altamira (Mexico) are the two largest single lines and most efficient (measured in terms of operating costs per metric ton) in the world and are based on proprietary technology. Through its engineering division Chemtex, M&G Chemicals provides technological development, research and engineering services for the construction of plants for customers in the polyester chain (including PET, polyester fibre and PTA production) and LNG industries. These activities are also aimed at enabling the production of PET resin 100% made from renewable sources. M&G Chemicals is an affiliated entity with the Mossi Ghisolfi Group.

For further information:

About Beta Renewables

Beta Renewables is a leader in the field of advanced biofuels and biochemical compounds at competitive costs. It was established at the end of 2011 as a joint venture between Biochemtex, a company of the Mossi Ghisolfi Group, and the U.S. fund TPG (Texas Pacific Group) with a total investment of 250 million Euro (350 million dollars). At the end of 2012, Novozymes – world leader in the enzymes industry – became a shareholder of Beta Renewables, with the acquisition of 10 percent of the shares, amounting to 90 million Euro. Beta Renewables owns the PROESATM technology, applied to the field of biofuels and chemical intermediates. Beta Renewables manages the plant in Crescentino (VC), the first commercial facility in the world for the production of second-generation ethanol. For further information:

About Novozymes

Novozymes is the world leader in bioinnovation. Together with customers across a broad array of industries we create tomorrow's industrial biosolutions, improving our customers' business and the use of our planet's resources. With over 700 products used in 130 countries, Novozymes' bioinnovations improve industrial performance and safeguard the world's resources by offering superior and sustainable solutions for tomorrow's ever-changing marketplace. Read more at

About Guozhen Group

Guozhen Group is a private enterprise in Anhui Province, East China. With total assets of US$ 800 million, the group has been mainly involved in the business of environmental protection, natural gas, renewable energy, health and real estate, operating biomass power plant and CNG filling stations in Fuyang city. For further information:

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SOURCE M&G Chemicals
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