Maire Tecnimont and Biorenova in Chemical Recycling Pact

09.02.2023 - NextChem, a subsidiary of Italian engineering contractor Maire Tecnimont, has agreed to acquire, scale up and commercialize Biorenova’s proprietary CatC continuous chemical recycling technology through a joint venture.

The process recovers monomers with ultra-high levels of purity from sorted plastic waste, especially polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA).

A new company will be established, with NextChem taking 51% and Biorenova holding the remaining 49%. Through the venture, NextChem will act as technology licensor and provider of process engineering and critical equipment. The transaction is expected to complete by Apr. 30, subject to the usual conditions.

Maire Tecnimont said the acquisition is “strategically significant” as it allows the group to expand its technological portfolio and enter new markets. “With this agreement we are further expanding the group’s technological portfolio of depolymerization technologies, following our experience in chemical recycling. We will progressively apply such innovative technology to several added-value markets,” said Alessandro Bernini, Maire Tecnimont’s CEO.

The Milan-based group expects revenues from chemical recycling activities to grow to €30 million by 2028, and then settle within an annual range of €15-20 million.

NextChem intends to scale up the technology in the PMMA market, while also progressively expanding its application to other value-added plastics. For example, the process could also be suitable for depolymerizing polystyrene, which has numerous applications in areas such as packaging, electronics and automotive.

Biorenova has already built a CatC demonstration plant at its site in Montorio al Vomano in Teramo, Italy, and samples have been validated by prospective customers. Once scaled up, NextChem believes CatC will provide a cost-effective, competitive alternative to other existing depolymerization technologies for PMMA, as the obtained monomers can be used directly without any further treatment. Further optimization of the technology could allow the even larger polyolefins market to be addressed, it added.

Author: Elaine Burridge, Freelance Journalist


Maire Tecnimont SpA

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