Danish biofuel technology company Biogasol is in the closing stages of raising up to DKK 200m (USD 41.8m) from international venture funds and industrial investors in both Denmark and Europe, writes the professional journal Ingeniøren (The Engineer).
Biogasol, which was founded two years ago, designs and develops process technology for the production of biofuels like ethanol. The new injection of cash will be used to push ahead with a 2nd generation bioethanol demonstration plant, BornBioFuel, in Aakirkeby on the Danish island of Bornholm.
The plant is expected to cost up to DKK 285m (USD 57m), and half of the required investment has already been guaranteed by the Danish state. The facility is expected to be up and running before December 2009, when the UN Climate Change Conference (COP15) takes place in the Danish capital Copenhagen.
2nd generation (also known as 'cellulosic') bioethanol is made using agricultural residues such as wheat straw, wood chips and corn stover, rather than starch-containing food crops. Biogasol's plant on Bornholm will use locally available agricultural waste and other low-cost cellulosic feedstocks.
Biogasol is a spin-out company from the Technical University of Denmark. The major shareholder in the company is its founder and erstwhile DTU professor Birgitte Ahring, with the venture fund BankInvest as co-owner.
The new investment comes little more than a month after the US Department of Energy awarded Biogasol and its US partners, Pacific Ethanol and the Joint BioEnergy Institute, a USD 24.3m grant to build a cellulosic ethanol demonstration plant in Oregon.
The US demonstration plant will be located at the site of Pacific Ethanol's existing ethanol facility in the Beaver State, and will be designed to produce 10 million litres of ethanol annually. The plant is slated for completion in Q4 2009.