Renewable chemistry company Avantium NV can at long last commence building its FDCA plant in Delfzijl, in the northern part of the Netherlands.
In an announcement late 31 March, the company stated that it has reached financial close for the construction of what will be the world’s first commercial FDCA factory. The plant will have an anual production capacity of 5 kilotonnes of furandicarboxylic acid, known as FDCA, which is the key building block for polyethylene furanoate, a 100% plant-based, recyclable polyester polymer.
With financial close, engineering company Worley and the Groningen Consortium have become minority shareholders in the Avantium subsidiary Avantium Renewable Polymers, responsible for the FDCA flagship plant.
The Groningen Consortium has invested €20 million in the project, brought together by Groningen Seaports, the Investment Fund Groningen, the Growth Fund and the NOM, and will continue under the name ‘Bio Plastics Investment Groningen’ (BPIG) consortium. Worley and the Groningen Consortium together have acquired a 22.6% shareholding in the subsidiary, while Avantium continues to hold 77.4% of the equity.
Furthermore, the €90 million debt financing package has been signed with the consortium of Dutch banks, comprising ABN AMRO Bank, ASN Bank, ING Bank and Rabobank, as well as with impact investment fund Invest-NL.
With the closing of the above transaction, the signing of the debt facilities agreement and the subsidies continuing to be available to it, Avantium Renewable Polymers business plan is fully funded.
Avantium will now immediately start the construction of the FDCA flagship plant. Completion is planned for the end of 2023, enabling the commercial launch of PEF from 2024 onwards.