The major Spanish energy companies are increasing their usage of microalgae. (Photo: AlgaEnergy/ FIS)
Repsol acquires 20% share in microalgae research firm
Monday, August 30, 2010, 22:30 (GMT + 9)
The Spanish oil company Repsol
has completed its purchase of a 20 per cent share in AlgaEnergy, which is dedicated to researching microalgae.
After the transaction, shareholders at AlgaEnergy are composed of Augusto Rodriguez-Villa (45 per cent), Repsol (20 per cent), Perseo Sociedad de Capital Riesgo de Iberdrola (20 per cent) and other independent shareholders representing the remaining 15 per cent, reported Capital News.
Through this acquisition and a unity between their business and alternative energies, Repsol can now demonstrate their commitment to microalgae, due to its enormous potential to be used for creating biofuels.
As reported by the company, its executives decided to take part in a "technology based business plan for selecting, improving, cultivating and marketing various products which derive from microalgae, including capturing and storing carbon dioxide (CO2) and other raw materials used to produce biofuels."
Repsol will cooperate actively as a technological partner to AlgaEnergy, and will have two representatives on the Board of Directors.
In addition to this, the energy supplier will continue to develop other lines of research in this field.
At present, they are coordinating the Cenit PIIBE project (Innovation Project for the Promotion of Biodiesel in Spain). This initiative demonstrates how algae being used to produce oil for fuel fulfils a double function: as they absorb CO2 emissions and develop fuels which don't interfere with their alimentation.
However, researchers and entrepreneurs are seeking to industrialize the fuel, so that it can be technically and economically feasible on a large scale.
For its part, Iberdrola have announced the launch of a life-long research project, which will attempt to find the best use of algae.
To implement the study, which includes selection tasks, cultivating and fully exploiting microalgae, they will invest EUR 20 million.
By Analia Murias