San Donato Milanese, 13th June 2011 – Polimeri Europa (the biggest Italian chemical company, a subsidiary of Eni) and Novamont (a global market leader in biodegradable plastics) set up 13th June a new JV named Matrica SpA (meaning “mother‘ in the local Sardinian idiom) with plans to build an innovative bio-based chemical complex in Porto Torres (Sardinia, Italy).
With a total investment of 500 million Euro, the project consists of seven new plants - an integrated production chain from vegetable oil to bio-plastics - to be completed within the next six years, and a research center devoted to bio-chemistry that will be operative in the next quarter.
Matrica, the fifty-fifty Joint Venture set up by Polimeri Europa and Novamont will have Daniele Ferrari (CEO of Polimeri Europa) as Chairman, and Catia Bastioli ( CEO of Novamont) as Managing Director .
Matrica’s target market is the global bio-based chemical sector. According to recent analyst research this sector will grow at 17.7% per year reaching 8.1 million tons in 2015 (Lux Research, September 2010).
Novamont brings to the venture technologies and research and innovation skills in the sector of bio-plastics and bio-based products, whilst Polimeri Europa boosts this highly innovative project with its engineering and commercial capabilities in carrying out and managing big industrial complexes.
The project hopes to impact positively on the national chemical industry by bringing to market a virtuous production cycle based on technological innovation and sustainability whilst creating employment in the local area. A fundamental and innovative element of the project is its integrated supply chain, the raw material to produce the vegetable oil will be grown on site, in synergy with local food production.
To complete the project, Eni plans to build a biomass energy plant (with further investment estimated at around 230 million euros) to provide electrical power.
Polimeri Europa will convert the Porto Torres production from traditional fossil into bio-based productions: all the traditional chemical plants at the site with the exception of nitrilic rubbers NBR will be shut down, creating an available skilled workforce and facilities for the new project.
When it becomes operative (2015-2016) the total number of jobs at the site in Porto Torres will increase by 100, from 582 currently, to 685.
The bio-based chemical complex at Porto Torres will be one of the most important in the sector at a global level – due to its innovative integrated production chain, its size and the massive overall installed capacity of 350 kt/a of bio-products.