Bioenergy

Mascoma Buys SunOpta BioProcess for $51 M

Ethanol manufacturer Mascoma announced that it has acquired Canada-based SunOpta BioProcess Inc. (SBI), a division of SunOpta Inc. The two companies will now combine SBI’s fiber preparation and pretreatment technologies with the consolidated bioprocessing (CBP) technology of Mascoma bringing Mascoma a step closer towards its full commercialization of cellulosic ethanol.

Following the transaction — which SunOpta reports values SBI at $51 million — the resulting company will be approximately 73% owned by existing Mascoma shareholders, approximately 18% by SunOpta, and the balance by other SBI shareholders. SBI will operate as Mascoma Canada, a wholly-owned Canadian subsidiary of Mascoma.

The companies’ say that in addition to the technical synergies, the combined entity will have the leading intellectual property position in the cellulosic biofuels sector, because it will now cover both pretreatment and consolidated bioprocessing technologies.

Mascoma, through its affiliate Frontier Renewable Resources LLC, is currently developing a commercial scale production facility in Kinross, Michigan. The facility is based on technologies developed in Mascoma’s laboratories in Lebanon, New Hampshire and in practice in its demonstration facility in Rome, New York.