The Japanese industrial giant Mitsui has acquired the licensing rights to the 2nd generation (2G) bioethanol technology developed and demonstrated by Danish energy concern DONG Energy's bioethanol company Inbicon, reports financial daily newspaper Børsen.
Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding, a division of Japan's largest industrial conglomerate Mitsui, is the first overseas company to license Inbicon's biomass-based technology, which it will use to produce bioethanol from agrowaste generated by the palm oil industry in Malaysia. No mention was made in the article of how much Mitsui is paying for the license.
Christian Morgen, responsible for sales and marketing at Inbicon, told Børsen: "Today the waste biomass from the palm oil industry is essentially just left to rot. Our technology can be used to extract useful products in the form of bioethanol and a product which can be used as animal fodder."
Børsen reveals that Inbicon and Mitsui began discussions three years ago. What started as contact between development departments rapidly evolved into business negotiations, and a year ago Inbicon began testing its technology on palm oil biomass. The successful outcome of the tests, and calculations that showed that the idea was commercially viable, has resulted in a licensing deal being agreed.
Inbicon is also currently in dialogue with several American companies, and is in active negotiations with the US energy company Great River Energy in North Dakota. Meanwhile, potential European customers for Inbicon's technology are said to be eyeing the opportunity with interest.