Dutch AkzoNobel close to striking green feedstock deal with Solvay

04 June 2013 10:23  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Dutch coatings manufacturer AkzoNobel and Belgium-based chemical group Solvay are in the final stages of striking an innovative deal for the supply of renewable-based epichlorohydrin (ECH) from 2013-2016, the companies said on Tuesday.

Under the deal – one of the first of its kind in the chemicals sector – AkzoNobel will guarantee to buy volumes of glycerine-based ECH indirectly via the epoxy resins it purchases from Solvay’s customers.

The agreement is in the final stages of being signed off by boards of management at AkzoNobel and Solvay, according to Peter Nieuwenhuizen, director of future-proof supply chains at AkzoNobel.

AkzoNobel will use the increased supply of bio-based ECH, known as Epicerol, to help meet targets for reducing the carbon footprint of its products.

It has a target of a 20-35%/tonne reduction in the C02 used to make its finished products across its portfolio by 2020, with 2012 as the base.

The Epicerol deal will also allow AkzoNobel to increase the proportion of renewable-based ECH it uses from around zero at present to 20% by 2016.

Nieuwenhuizen said: “Many of our suppliers are customers of Solvay, [which is] selling bio-based [ECH]. We wanted to use a ‘book and claim’ approach, where you use a paper trail by an external auditor to verify how much bio-based product is in our supply.”

For Solvay the deal with AkzoNobel is unprecedented because it marks the first time it has agreed on a partnership with a company which is two steps away in the value chain, concerning a product for which the two companies have no direct commercial relationship.

Jean-Luc Preat, head of Solvay’s biochemical business unit, said: “We have agreed over five years to increase drastically our targeted tonnage of Epicerol, which will finally be incorporated in [AkzoNobel’s] epoxy coatings.”

By: Will Beacham
+44 20 8652 3214

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