First batch of isobutene from renewable resources delivered to Arkema

Global Bioenergies (NYSE Alternext Paris: ALGBE) announces the delivery of the first batch of isobutene from renewable resources to Arkema six months ahead of the projected schedule.

Since its startup in November 2014, Global Bioenergies’ industrial pilot – installed on the Pomacle-Bazancourt agro-industrial site near Reims in France – has been operated almost continuously with the support of ARD, an affiliate of French sugar producer Cristal Union. The first tasks consisted in scaling up the fermentation results achieved in the laboratory, followed by the startup of the purification and packaging module to allow the production of purified isobutene batches.
Global Bioenergies announces today that the first batches of isobutene from renewable resources have been packaged and shipped. The entire production chain has therefore been integrated for the first time: wheat starch-derived glucose has been converted into gaseous isobutene by single-step fermentation, which has in turn been purified and liquefied, before being packaged in pressurized cylinders dedicated to the transport of industrial gases.
Frédéric Pâques, Global Bioenergies’ COO declares: “Thanks to the cooperation of ARD’s and Global Bioenergies’ teams, the scaling up of our process in our industrial pilot has been achieved in record time. This is in line with our fundamental belief that the fermentative production of a gas facilitates the scaling up efforts. This hypothesis is being confirmed day after day”.
One cylinder filled with liquefied isobutene was then shipped to Arkema’s Pierre Bénite site south of Lyon as part of the BioMA+ project, which is financed by the French State (Investissements d’Avenir, operated by the ADEME). The isobutene will be converted into methacrylic acid – a key component of acrylic paints – at a pilot unit operated by Arkema.
Jean-Luc Dubois, Scientific Director at Arkema declares: “Arkema was already in contact with Global Bioenergies when its fermentation process was still in its infancy. The delivery of this first cylinder illustrates all the achievements of the past few years. Being the representative of the chemical industry chosen by Global Bioenergies for this program is also a demonstration of Arkema’s will to develop the bioeconomy.”.
Marc Delcourt, CEO of Global Bioenergies concludes: “Being able to deliver isobutene batches to industrialists further strengthens Global Bioenergies position. The Company has passed a major turning-point in its development. Concomitantly, we observe a favorable evolution of key market indicators for the bioeconomy: decreasing sugar prices and a gradual recovery of oil prices. The barrel of Brent has already increased by about 50% to $66 from its low point of January. A new 50% increase would bring it back to $100”.


Global Bioenergies is one of the few companies worldwide, and the only one in Europe, that is developing a process to convert renewable resources into hydrocarbons through fermentation. The Company initially focused its efforts on the production of isobutene, one of the most important petrochemical building blocks that can be converted into fuels, plastics, organic glass and elastomers. Global Bioenergies continues to improve the performances of its process, operates its industrial pilot and has begun the construction of its demo plant. The company also replicated its achievement to propylene and butadiene, two members of the gaseous olefins family, key molecules at the heart of petrochemical industry. Global Bioenergies is listed on Alternext, Euronext Paris (FR0011052257 – ALGBE).

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Jean-Baptiste BARBAROUX
Head of Corporate Development
Phone: 01 64 98 20 50

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