LUDWISGHAFEN, GERMANY - BASF is investing $30 million in the U.S technology firm Renmatix Inc., which has patterned a process to cost effectively produce industrial sugar from lignocellulosic biomass including wood, cane trash and straw.

BASF is participating through its subsidiary BASF Biorenewable Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG. BASF is the largest investor of the latest round of financing totaling $50 million.

Renmatix of Philadelphia, PA, has developed the Plantrose platform. Renmatix said the technology allows industrial sugar to be produced in large quantities and at competitive cost from non-edible plant mass.

In the Plantrose technology, woody biomass and other biomass materials are split into cellulose and sugar in super-critical water at high temperature and pressure in a two-step process. Industrial sugars are used in the chemical industry, including to produce biofuels or basic chemical products and intermediates by fermentation processes.

“Thanks to the partnership with BASF we can now develop and commercialize our technology more efficient. We have already demonstrated the functionality of the Plantrose process in a pilot plant. In cooperation with BASF, we will be moving it to the industrial scale,” said Mike Hamilton, CEO at Renmatix.

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