Bunge, a St. Louis agribusiness giant, announced this week that it agreed to sell the Rotterdam refinery in the Netherlands to Neste Oyj for €258 million ($300 million) in cash.
Bunge said it will lease the Rotterdam facility back from Neste in a phased transition through 2024. Neste is headquartered in Espoo, Finland, and is the largest producer of renewable diesel fuel in the world.
Neste is acquiring Bunge Loders Croklaan’s facility to boost its raw material pre-treatment capacity for the production of renewable products.
The Bunge plant is located next to Neste’s existing biorefinery and comprises a pre-treatment facility, tank farm and jetties. It also has a pipeline connection to Neste’s site.
Bunge expects to complete the sale in the first quarter of 2021, adding that it will use some of the proceeds to improve operational flexibility and efficiency in its asset footprint.
To meet the growing demand for renewable diesel, sustainable aviation fuel and feedstock for chemicals, Neste is focusing on building a global feedstock and production platform for renewables.
The company is looking to expand its renewables annual production capacity from 3.2 to 4.5 million tons by the first quarter of 2023.
After completion of the purchases, the transition process will be implemented in phases and the refinery’s full pre-treatment capacity is expected to be ready for processing Neste’s feedstock by the end of 2024.
“The acquisition of the refinery plant supports our global growth strategy in renewables. It allows us to accelerate the scaling up of our renewable raw material pretreatment capacity, which is an important driver for expanding the use of waste and residue feedstocks and increasing our feedstock flexibility,” said Neste’s President and CEO Peter Vanacker.
“We are committed to increasing the share of waste and residues in our renewables feedstock mix to 100% by 2025,” he said.
In May this year, Neste purchased Dutch Count Companies BV’s Count Terminal Rotterdam BV and its supporting entities. This terminal Count Terminal stores, refines and blends renewable waste and residue-based raw materials (Category 3 animal fats and used cooking oils) in the Rotterdam harbour area to be used for oleochemical products and transportation fuels.