US Codexis cellulosic detergent alcohol to hit markets in 2014

07 December 2011 23:50  [Source: ICIS news]

NEW YORK (ICIS)--US-based industrial biotechnology firm Codexis expects to make its first commercial sales of its cellulosic-sugar-based detergent alcohol products by 2014, a company official said on Wednesday.

The company expects to have a 650 litre pilot unit set up in 2012 in the company’s Redwood City headquarters in California.

A demonstration plant will be built with a partner by the end of 2013 or early 2014, said Joe Sarret, vice president and chief business officer of Codexis during the company’s first investor day meeting in New York City.

Codexis plans its first commercial plant to be on line by 2015 with a capacity of 60,000 tonnes/year. The company expects to have three plants running by 2020 with total capacity at 180,000 tonnes/year.

“Sales opportunity from that facility is targeted at $160m [€120m] in 2015 and $560m in 2020,” said Sarret. “We are working to deploy our technology in multiple geographies,” he added.

Codexis is targeting cash cost for CodeXol, the detergent alcohol, at less than $1,000/tonne. This is compared with C12-C14 detergent alcohol prices typically seen at a price range of around $2,000/tonne.

Sarret said it will take about 3.7 tonnes of cellulosic sugar derived from 7.4 tonnes of biomass to produce one tonne of detergent alcohol.

Codexis estimated the global detergent alcohol consumption at 2.1m tonnes in 2010 and expected to reach 3.1m tonnes by 2020.

Detergent alcohols are mostly converted into surfactants for use in end products such as household detergents, personal care, industrial and institutional cleaning products, lubricants and solvents.

($1 = €0.75)

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