Myriant Corporation, a global renewable chemicals company, announced today the successful scaling and commercial production of bio-succinic acid at ThyssenKrupp Uhde’s biotech commercial validation facility in Leuna, Germany. The production process meets targets for commercial yield and product quality.
Myriant and ThyssenKrupp Uhde signed an exclusive alliance agreement in 2009 to commercialize bio-succinic acid. The two companies have worked together since then to achieve two main objectives of the agreement. First, to ensure that the bio-succinic acid process is cost competitive and that it produces the highest purity product at commercial scale. Second, to enable ThyssenKrupp Uhde to provide important process and performance guarantees for the bio-succinic acid process at future Myriant plants built by Uhde.
“With the success at Leuna we have achieved the first objective set out in our alliance agreement with ThyssenKrupp Uhde. Producing on-spec, commercial grade bio-succinic acid while meeting our commercial cost targets would not be possible without the expert engineering, design and process expertise of ThyssenKrupp Uhde, our global alliance partner and our selected engineering partner for future commercial production plants,” commented Cenan Ozmeral, Ph.D., Myriant’s Chief Operating Officer.
“Myriant has established a track record for executing against our stated milestones and also for achieving significant industry-firsts,” said Stephen J. Gatto, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Myriant. “We believe obtaining a process guarantee from ThyssenKrupp Uhde will be an important strategic differentiator for Myriant in the bio-based chemicals industry and that, when coupled with a proven, scalable process, will enable us to access lower-cost capital to fund our plant build-out program in the United States and abroad.”
“In Myriant we found a partner that delivers on its promises. ThyssenKrupp Uhde selected Myriant amongst a long list of bio-chemical companies globally because we believed the company not only had the best scientists and technology, but also because Myriant has the requisite depth to build a long-lasting, bio-chemicals company; staying power and longevity are important attributes for us. The success in Leuna, in addition to Myriant’s other achievements in the bio-succinic acid market, confirms that we made the right decision,” said Joachim Schulze, Ph.D., Head of Biotechnology Division for ThyssenKrupp Uhde.
Globally, the annual worldwide market for succinic acid is estimated at approximately $7.5 billion in new and existing applications. Succinic acid, which is traditionally produced from petroleum, can be used in a wide variety of applications including polymers, urethanes, plasticizers and coatings. Myriant’s high purity bio-succinic acid is made from renewable feedstocks and is chemically equivalent to petroleum-based succinic acid while providing a lower environmental footprint. Myriant’s bio-succinic acid reduces harmful green house gas emissions by 94% compared to petroleum-derived succinic acid and by 93% compared to petroleum-derived adipic acid.
Myriant utilizes its proprietary technology platform to develop innovative, performance-based, renewable chemicals utilizing low-cost sugars. In December 2010 Myriant broke ground on its flagship 30 million pound commercial bio-succinic acid facility in Lake Providence, Louisiana, and anticipates beginning commercial production in early 2013. The company’s D(-) lactic acid started production at commercial scale in June 2008 for use in polylactic acid. Myriant has agreements with ThyssenKrupp Uhde for engineering, Davy Process Technology for the integration of Myriant’s bio-succinic acid process with the Davy butanediol process for the production of bio-based butanediol, and PTT Chemical for the commercialization of Myriant’s technology in Southeast Asia. Myriant is headquartered in Quincy, Massachusetts. Myriant was named a Top 100 Company in North America by Red Herring Magazine in 2013.
About ThyssenKrupp Uhde
ThyssenKrupp Uhde has a workforce of more than 5,900 employees worldwide and is a company in the Industrial Solutions business area of the ThyssenKrupp Group. The company’s activities focus on the engineering and construction of chemical and other industrial plants in the following fields: fertilisers; electrolysis; gas technologies; oil, coal and residue gasification; refining technologies; organic intermediates, polymers and synthetic fibres; and also coke plant and high-pressure technologies. We also provide our customers with professional services and comprehensive solutions in all areas of industrial plant operation.
Sue Hager SVP, Corporate Communications and Government Affairs
Source: Myriant Corporation, press release, 2013-05-30.