10 Juli 2017

Project for the construction of a PDO/BA production plant on the Carling Saint-Avold platform (Moselle)

Agreement with TOTAL Développement Régional (TDR) and TechnipFMC to carry out the preliminary engineering studies

  • Signature of an agreement with TOTAL Développement Régional
  • Launch of preliminary engineering studies with TechnipFMC

Clermont-Ferrand, 3rd July 2017 – METabolic EXplorer (METEX), an industrial biochemical company specialising in the development and industrial application of green and sustainable biochemical processes, announces the signing of an agreement with TOTAL Développement Régional (TDR) for the construction of a PDO/BA (1,3 propanediol and butyric acid) production plant. The Carling Saint-Avold chemicals platform in Moselle (Greater East Region) has been chosen as the site for this facility. METEX considers the construction of this plant a top priority for the implementation of its new strategy, presented last May.

A METEX-owned production unit to retain the majority of the value generated by this technology

METEX’s goal is to become the leading supplier of butyric acid for animal nutrition and the top-ranked producer of non-GMO 1,3 propanediol (PDO) for use in cosmetics. To achieve this goal and retain the majority of the value generated, METEX has decided to prioritise the construction of its own production facility.

The objective is to construct a production plant with a capacity of 24 kt in two stages:

  • A first, 6-kt stage (5 kt of PDO and 1 kt of butyric acid)
  • A second, 18-kt stage (15 kt of PDO and 3 kt of butyric acid)

METEX has assessed several sites that could host this PDO/BA plant, including the Carling Saint-Avold site. A Voluntary Economic and Social Development Agreement was signed in 2014 by the State, the Region, and TOTAL Petrochemicals France to spur further development of the Carling Saint-Avold platform.

Following an initial assessment phase of the METEX project by TOTAL, METEX agrees to carry out studies for the construction of its PDO/BA plant at the Carling Saint-Avold site. TOTAL agrees to make every effort to mobilise all stakeholders and to assist METEX in obtaining public funding. The agreement between METEX and TDR specifies the financial support to be provided for the preliminary studies and also the competitive terms for the provision of land and the main utilities and services required.

Last, as the first stage of the industrial project will create 43 jobs in the Moselle, on 29 June 2017, the municipal districts of the Communauté de Communes Agglo Saint-Avold Centre Mosellan approved the grant of a €200,000 subsidy to METEX.

Everything is now in place to launch the studies phase for the construction of this production facility, with this phase being financed mainly by METEX’s partners.

Antoine Darbois, corporate secretary of METEX, says: “With this agreement, we have already set the terms under which the production plant could operate. This important first phase in realising our plan to have our own production facility has now been completed, and a new phase is beginning with the launch of the preliminary engineering studies.”

METEX has asked TechnipFMC to carry out the preliminary engineering studies.

TechnipFMC has been chosen to carry out the preliminary engineering studies to validate the technical and economic conditions for the construction of the plant on the Carling site. Based on the conclusions of these studies, and once METEX and its financial partners have determined the means of financing the investments for the first stage (estimated at €25 million), the final decision on the investment is expected by late 2017/early 2018. If it is decided to move forward with the project, construction is expected to begin late in the first half of 2018 (with a leeway of 3 months), in line with the announced calendar.

 

About METabolic EXplorer

A pioneer in industrial biochemistry with some 20 years of experience, METabolic EXplorer (METEX) develops alternative solutions to the petrochemical processes used in manufacturing.

Using renewable raw materials, it develops innovative industrial fermentation processes to produce chemical compounds used in basic products of everyday life such as animal nutrition and health additives, plastics, textiles, cosmetics, and resins, among many others.

The company’s ambition with its biotechnological innovations is to produce consumer goods in a different way, without oil, in order to meet environmental challenges and consumers’ new societal expectations.

To create these innovative processes, METabolic EXplorer relies on a 70-person staff possessing the complementary competencies essential at every step of their development, from the optimisation of strains in the laboratory to the pilot-scale production of samples.

Based at the Clermont Limagne technology park, on the outskirts of Clermont-Ferrand, METabolic Explorer is listed on Euronext in Paris (Compartment C, METEX) and is included in the CAC Small Index.

About Total Développement Régional

The TOTAL group works with local social and economic actors and through its Total Développement Régional (TDR) unit to promote development in the regions where it operates. This includes carrying out industrial reconversion initiatives to stimulate and diversify economic and industrial activities in the employment basins where the Group is restructuring.

Source: Metabolic Explorer, press release, 2017-07-03.

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