Germany-based gas producer Linde via its engineering business Linde Engineering Dresden has acquired the Carbo-V technology of the insolvent biofuel producer CHOREN (insolvent means bankrupt by the way, according to Google).
The Carbo-V technology is a multi-stage biomass gasification process, which was CHOREN’s main asset. Linde said it will offer the technology as licensor and also as an engineering and contracting company for commercial projects.
CHOREN filed for insolvency in July 2011 because of financial difficulties in starting up its synthesis gas demonstration plant in Freiberg, Saxonia. CHOREN processes biomass such as wood and wood wastes into synthesis gas, and in turn into biofuel – ethanol in particular.
ICIS actually wrote an article about CHOREN’s insolvency last year where there was an allegation reported that the company may have misled government officials about feedstock costs and its technology to gain financing support for its Freiberg plant project. (A bell rings in the blogger’s ears…who is that well-financed biomass ethanol producer in the US that had the same bankruptcy fate???)
The blog actually covered CHOREN’s first bout of financing problems in November 2009 when one of its biggest investors, Dutch oil company Shell, sold its shares in CHOREN to remaining shareholders that include a group of Hamburg-based entrepreneurs and carmakers Daimler and Volkswagen.
Shell started working with CHOREN in 2005 in the development of biomass-to-liquid (BTL) fuels using mostly wood products and wood-based waste as feedstock. Shell did not comment at that time on its specific reasons for exiting CHOREN.
Last October, administrators sold CHOREN’s components business, which makes specialised gasification components and equipment.