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UK non-food biomass plant receives £2.3m investment

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A Teesside, UK-based business which uses non-food biomass to generate biofuels has received a £2.3 million (€2.55 million) investment.

Nova Pangaea Technologies completed a funding round led by NPIF – Mercia Equity Finance, which is managed by Merica and forms part of the Northern Powerhouse Investment Fund (funded by the European Union), with extra funds from existing investors including Cambridge Angels with venture capital form Par Equity.

The firm, based in Redcar in northeast England, processes non-food biomass such as waste timber, straw or other crop waste to create chemicals or bioethanol, which can be used as fuel. Nova Pangaea Technologies’ process offers the potential to drastically reduce carbon emissions and reduces the need for using crops which could otherwise be consumed.

The company is building a demonstration plant with the support of a £4.6 million (€5.11 million) Department of Transport grant and currently employs 10 staff as well as local subcontractors. However, it’s estimated the new plant, which is due for completion in the coming months, will create hundreds of new jobs in the long-term.

Nova Pangaea’s team is led by engineer, serial entrepreneur and CEO Ed Wilson, who claims the funding “represents a major milestone in our journey to commercialisation.” He added: “With the support of our investors and the commitment of expert staff and board, our technology will soon be providing real ‘green’ benefits to the UK and within the huge global marketplace, reinforcing the UK’s position as a leader in the sector.”

Simon Crabtree, investment manager at Mercia, added: “Nova Pangaea has created a fantastic technology that could make a significant impact on both the UK and the world’s energy and chemicals needs, and break the reliance on oil.”

Image: (From left) Mike Russell and David Solely of Tees Valley LEP, Simon Crabtree of Mercia, Sean Hutchinson of the British Business Bank and Ed Wilson and Yunus Patel of Nova Pangaea.