Company initiatives

BioAmber partners with Brenntag

The bio-succinic acid market is really starting their commercialization efforts in full force with several distributor partnership announcements.

This week, BioAmber said it has partnered with one of the world’s largest chemical distributor, Brenntag, for the distribution of BioAmber’s Bio-SA bio-based succinic acid and derivatives, including bio-based 1,4-butanediol (BDO) in the Americas. Succinic acid can serve as a building block chemical for use in a range of applications including polyurethanes, unsaturated polyesters, coating resins, flavors, lubricants, plasticizers, deicers and solvents.

“Many customers are looking for price stability and recognize the value of bio-based products. Bio-succinic acid and biobased BDO will help Brenntag to fulfill our customers’ needs.”

According to BioAmber’s recent IPO prospectus, BioAmber has commenced engineering and substantially completed permitting for its new 30,000 tons/year bio-succinic acid facility in Sarnia, Ontario, Canada. Initial phase is expected to be mechanically complete in 2014 at which time it plans to begin commissioning and start-up. The facility could subsequently be expanded to produce another 20,000 metric tons of bio-succinic acid.

No word yet on when and where the company and its joint venture partner Mitsui will start construction of a commercial bio-BDO facility using BioAmber’s succinic acid as feedstock. According to BioAmber, around 30,000 tons of bio-succinic acid can be converted into 22,000 tons of bio-BDO. BioAmber estimated theoretical yield for producing bio-BDO via succinic acid is at 85% with 1.2kg of sugar needed to produce 1kg of bio-BDO.

Mitsui will most probably also take an active role in distributing BioAmber’s succinic acid and bio-BDO in Asia.

Meanwhile, another bio-succinic acid producer Myriant has recently signed two distributor partnership itself, one with Germany-based BCD Chemie and the other, with Turkish chemical distributor Bayegan Group.

As for the rest of other bio-succinic acid producers, Reverdia and Succinity, the blog assumes these two already have big chemical distributor connections via DSM (for Reverdia) and BASF (for Succinity).

About Doris de Guzman

Will Green Chemistry save the world or is it hype? Doris de Guzman examines alternative processing, new technology, R&D and other sustainability initiatives aimed at preventing pollution; replacing ingredients; and using renewable feedstocks in Green Chemistry. She has been covering the oleochemicals market for 15 years and spread her beat to inorganics, biofuels and green chemistry.

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