Cathay Industrial Biotech (Cathay), a privately-held industrial biotechnology company focused on producing specialty bio-based chemicals, announced a new round of financing which will be used for additional production capacity at their existing Jinxiang facility and to build a new production site.
This represents a significant expansion in their production capacity for their long chain dibasic acids (LCDA), 1,5-pentanediamine (DN-5) and downstream polyamide business. Funding for this expansion will be provided by a $135M investment from Shanxi Lu'an Mining (Group) Co. Ltd. and will commercialize recent Cathay-developed technology breakthroughs in both raw materials and production technology which significantly improve production efficiency and environmental impact. The LCDA expansion will be completed by 2Q 2016, and will be sufficient to meet the current global demand. Expansion of DN-5 and DN-5-based polyamides capacity will come on-line in late 2016.
"We are excited to participate with Cathay in the venture. Not only will Lu'An contribute capital into this project but also follow-up investments for its infrastructure, raw materials and down-stream products. We expect significant synergies when combined with Cathay's new technologies," added Jinping Li, Chairman of Lu'An Group.
Cathay began production of C11 through C18 LCDA in 2003 and renewable dodecanedioic acid in 2008. Cathay has grown to be the global leader for LCDA within ten years.
Cathay's DN-5 product is yet another innovative product from its first-of-its-kind large-scale commercialization of biomanufacturing in the world. DN-5 is a novel renewable diamine which can be largely used in polyamide and diisocyanate coatings markets.
Cathay will also produce renewable polyamides using DN-5, their LCDA and other monomers for the engineering polymers and textile segments under the trademarks Terryl™ and Ecopent™.
When describing Cathay's vision to commercialize bio-based polyamides, Dr. Xiucai Liu, CEO of Cathay announced, "This is only another step for Cathay and its associated partners to commercialize downstream products from DN-5 based-biopolyamides. We expect to invest around RMB 20 billion over the next few years to realize this goal."