Michelin's purchase of a 20% stake in Scandinavian Enviro Systems is aimed at developing the latter's pyrolysis tyre recycling technology further.
French tyre manufacturer Michelin has announced a strategic partnership with Scandinavian Enviro Systems (SES), a Sweden-based tyre recycling firm, by acquiring a 20% stake in the latter for about €3 million. With this acquisition, Michelin has become the largest shareholder of SES.
Established in 2001, SES has developed an innovative tyre recycling technology that can modify the chemical composition and physical phase of the pneumatic material during the pyrolysis process. For those not aware, pyrolysis is the thermal decomposition of materials at elevated temperatures in an inert atmosphere, or simply put, it's the chemical decomposition of an organic compound at very high temperatures.
In simpler terms, SES uses a blend of patented technologies, like CFC (Carbonized by Forced Convection) and EHD (Enhanced Heat Distribution) to recycle old tyres (using pyrolysis) and get back high-quality raw materials such as carbon black, pyrolysis oil, steel or gas. Thanks to SES, the entire process entails minimal energy consumption. These raw materials can then be supplied to other industries for the production of numerous other goods.
Apart from Michelin's stake purchase, other crucial elements of this partnership involve a 'Development Agreement' between the two firms, a joint 'Supply Agreement' and the development of a jointly-owned factory unit. The Development Agreement will ensure Michelin's investment in the application of SES' technology on a larger scale.
The Supply Agreement is meant to facilitate a flow of global resources from Michelin's end to let SES get a global footprint. 'Michelin is one of the world’s leading tyre manufacturers and this collaboration means that we can become established globally in a way that we would never have managed alone,' said Enviro’s Chairman Alf Blomqvist.
Lastly, the jointly-owned plant is meant to industrialise SES' recycling process so that it can be exploited to its maximum potential. The location of this plant will be decided by mid-2020 when both companies will execute the final agreement.
According to SES, each year about a billion tyres reach the end-of-life stage and are generally accumulated at various dumpsites across the globe. Thanks to SES' recycling process, virtually each & every old tyre can be used to regain crucial raw materials.