Acquisition of Novomer technologies boosts Aramco’s downstream expansion strategy

Amin H. Nasser, Saudi Aramco president & CEO
Updated 06 November 2016

Acquisition of Novomer technologies boosts Aramco’s downstream expansion strategy

DHAHRAN: Saudi Aramco has acquired the Converge product line and associated operations and technologies from the US-based Novomer Inc. The transaction was valued at around $100 million.
Converge is manufactured from and contains a significant portion of carbon dioxide (CO2). The technology provides a high performance, cost competitive and more sustainable alternative to conventional petroleum-based polyols that are used in coating, adhesive, sealant, and elastomer (case) applications which feature in high-value, high-demand end-products, including within the flexible and rigid foam manufacturing segments.
Applications cover a broad spectrum from automobile seats to building insulation panels.
Saudi Aramco President & CEO Amin H. Nasser said: “Some of Saudi Aramco’s most significant achievements in recent years have been in developing new international partnerships in the downstream space. There is compelling industrial logic to the Converge polyol technology deal as it enables the conversion of waste CO2 into cleaner, high-value end-products with significant performance, cost and carbon footprint improvements..
The deal also enables the development of new technological growth areas in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 objectives of economic diversification and job creation.”
Abdulaziz Al-Judaimi, acting senior vice president of downstream, Saudi Aramco, said: “The acquisition of the Converge technology reflects the success of Saudi Aramco’s efforts to continuously seek the best possible opportunity for the commercialization of specific downstream technologies on a large-scale. This technology represents an excellent marriage of improved product quality and lower cost while achieving environmental benefits.”
Al-Judaimi added: “By providing access to reliable feedstock supplies, financial stability and unrivaled R&D investment and focus, Saudi Aramco will accelerate the commercialization of these exciting new polyol materials. This will help spur growth in the production of more sustainable finished and semi-finished products in the petrochemicals conversion sector, including within the small and medium enterprise sector in Saudi Arabia.”
Compared to conventional polyols, Converge polyols are stated to have approximately one-third the carbon footprint. When incorporated into polyurethane formulations, they demonstrate superior material performance, including increased strength; increased abrasion, chemical and weather resistance; increased adhesion, hardness and tear-strength; greater load bearing capacity; and reduced heat of combustion.
Saudi Aramco will manufacture and market Converge and associated products through its subsidiary, Aramco Performance Materials LLC (APM).
Saudi Aramco is planning for full-scale production facilities in Saudi Arabia to support the manufacture of specialty and intermediate chemical products to supply a wide variety of industries.
Saudi Aramco’s carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) technology deployment and research and development activities are part of a holistic approach to complement the Kingdom’s broader energy efficiency and greenhouse gas (GHG) management framework.
In July 2015, Saudi Aramco launched Saudi Arabia’s first carbon capture and storage pilot project at the Uthmaniyah field and Hawiyah facilities.
Currently the largest such project in the Middle East, it will inject 800,000 tons of CO2 every year.
Saudi Aramco has also pioneered research on capturing CO2 from mobile sources, developing a prototype vehicle that can capture up to 25 percent CO2 in real driving conditions.
In 2013 Saudi Aramco made a venture investment in Novomer, through its Saudi Aramco Energy Ventures (SAEV) subsidiary, to help accelerate the development and commercialization of the Converge technology.


Arabtec Holding said to hire AlixPartners for debt advisory

Updated 25 September 2020

Arabtec Holding said to hire AlixPartners for debt advisory

DUBAI: Dubai-listed contractor Arabtec Holding has hired advisory firm AlixPartners to help it restructure the company’s debt, two sources familiar with the matter said.

AlixPartners is assessing the company’s debt profile, before any potential discussions with Arabtec’s creditors, according to the sources, who declined to be named as the matter is not public.

Arabtec did not respond to a query for comment when contacted on Thursday. AlixPartners declined  to comment.

Arabtec Holding is due to hold a shareholder meeting on Thursday afternoon to decide whether to continue operating or liquidate and dissolve the firm after the pandemic hit projects and led to additional costs.

FASTFACT

 

Arabtec last month posted a first-half loss of 794 million dirhams ($216.18 million).

The company, which last month posted a first-half loss of 794 million dirhams ($216.18 million) and total accumulated losses of 1.46 billion dirhams, said on Sept. 9 that it was calling a general assembly under an article of UAE company law.

The law requires companies to vote on whether they should continue operating if their accumulated losses reach half of their issued share capital.

Shares of Arabtec Holding, which helped to build the Louvre Abu Dhabi and the world’s tallest skyscraper, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, have plunged 56.7 percent this year. They were down almost 5 percent when a suspension of trading was triggered at 1 p.m. local time ahead of the meeting, which was being held in Abu Dhabi.

Several UAE companies have sought to extend debt maturities or agree better terms in recent years to avoid defaults, after an oil price crash hit energy services and construction.

This week, creditors started to enforce claims against Abu Dhabi-based Al Jaber Group, which has struggled since building up debt in the wake of a UAE real estate crisis and began talks with creditors in 2011.

Dubai-listed construction firm Drake & Scull is working under the UAE bankruptcy law to reach an agreement with its creditors in an out-of-court process.