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LyondellBasell and KIRKBI invest in APK to develop recycling technology

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands and BILLUND, Denmark and MERSEBURG, Germany, Feb. 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, LyondellBasell (NYSE: LYB), a global leader in the chemical industry and KIRKBI A/S, the family-owned holding and investment company of the LEGO® brand, announce they have signed an agreement to make an investment in APK, which specializes in a unique solvent-based recycling technology for low density polyethylene (LDPE).

Signing the agreement to invest in APK (left to right): Matthijs Beijk (LyondellBasell), Dr. Robert Marx (APK), Susanne Küppers (APK), Dr. Søren Hein (APK), Mikkel Mücke (KIRKBI) (Credit: APK AG/Tom Schulze)
Signing the agreement to invest in APK (left to right): Matthijs Beijk (LyondellBasell), Dr. Robert Marx (APK), Susanne Küppers (APK), Dr. Søren Hein (APK), Mikkel Mücke (KIRKBI) (Credit: APK AG/Tom Schulze)

APK aims to increase the recycling of multi-layer flexible packaging materials – which today make up the majority of mixed plastic waste from the consumer sector. To this end, APK has developed the unique solvent-based Newcycling® process, which separates the different polymers of multi-layer packaging materials and produces recycled materials with a high degree of purity suitable for new packaging materials.

Under the agreement, LyondellBasell and KIRKBI will become minority shareholders in APK and together with other co-investors will invest approximately 130 million Euros in APK.  Further Newcyling® Plants are planned to be built to increase the production capacity.

"We need to advance the recycling of all types of plastic waste material generated today to support the goal of a circular economy and meet the increasing demand for high quality recycled products," says Yvonne van der Laan, LyondellBasell Executive Vice President, Circular and Low Carbon Solutions. "Advancing this technology, through our investment in APK, will enable more plastic packaging waste to be reintroduced back into the value chain and will address the demand from consumers and brand owners for more sustainable packaging.  Products made using this unique Newcycling® solvent-based technology will be a great complementary addition to our existing Circulen product portfolio, which currently offers mechanical and advanced recycling solutions to our customers." 

"We are happy to announce our investment in APK. KIRKBI believes APK offers a promising scalable technology in LDPE recycling that can help increase the circularity of plastics and minimize plastic waste, to contribute to a more sustainable environment in the future. We look forward to providing strategic, financial and commercial support while APK establishes technology that will compliment mechanical and chemical recycling," says Damir Hamzic, Head of the Circular Plastics Investment area in KIRKBI, which focuses on investments that contribute to the transition to a more circular plastics economy.

"Our Newcycling® technology makes it possible to close the loop even with complex waste streams and to produce high-quality LDPE recyclates from mixed plastic waste - highly efficient and offering both economic and ecological advantages. We have been proving for years that this is also possible on an industrial scale at our plant in Merseburg," says Susanne Küppers, Member of the Executive Board of APK AG and Managing Director of APK NCC. "We are pleased to now ignite the next stage and are proud to have LyondellBasell and KIRKBI as two strong supporters at our side, who bring a lot of additional expertise, for example in the areas of polymer design and application know how."

About LyondellBasell

As a leader in the global chemical industry, LyondellBasell strives every day to be the safest, best operated and most valued company in our industry. The company's products, materials and technologies are advancing sustainable solutions for food safety, access to clean water, healthcare and fuel efficiency in more than 100 international markets. LyondellBasell places high priority on diversity, equity and inclusion and is Advancing Good with an emphasis on our planet, the communities where we operate and our future workforce.  The company takes great pride in its world-class technology and customer focus. LyondellBasell has stepped up its circularity and climate ambitions and actions to address the global challenges of plastic waste and decarbonization.  For more information, please visit www.lyondellbasell.com or follow @LyondellBasell on LinkedIn.

About KIRKBI

KIRKBI A/S is the Kirk Kristiansen family's private holding and investment company founded to build a sustainable future for the family ownership of the LEGO® brand through generations. Our work is focused on three fundamental tasks all contributing to enabling the Kirk Kristiansen family to succeed with the mission to inspire and develop the builders of tomorrow: We work to protect, develop and leverage the LEGO brand across all the LEGO branded entities. We are committed to a long-term and responsible investment strategy to ensure a sound financial foundation for the owner family's activities as well as contributing to a sustainable development in the world. And, we are dedicated to support the family members as they prepare for future generations to continue the active and engaged ownership as well as supporting their private activities, companies and philanthropic work. 

About APK
Plastic waste is one of the most pressing problems of our time. To meet this challenge, APK is developing forward-thinking technologies under its Newcycling® brand that will significantly contribute to reducing CO2 emissions as well as safeguarding raw materials for future generations. At its site in Merseburg, Germany, APK AG is operating a worldwide unique pilot plant, where the industrialization of this technology has already been achieved. Since June 2022, APK AG has also been operating a technical center at the Frankfurt Hoechst location via its subsidiary APK Newcycling Competence Center GmbH(APK NCC).

APK AG, founded in 2008, currently employs almost 220 people. Around 200 of these are employed at the Merseburg site. The two well established plastic recyclate products created in Merseburg are marketed as Mersalen® and Mersamid®.

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS FOR LYONDELLBASELL

The statements in this release relating to matters that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions of management of LyondellBasell which are believed to be reasonable at the time made and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual results could differ materially based on factors including, but not limited to, our ability to meet our sustainability goals, including the ability to increase production of recycled and renewable-based polymers; and the successful construction and operation of the facilities described in this release. Additional factors that could cause results to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements can be found in the "Risk Factors" section of our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2021, which can be found at www.LyondellBasell.com on the Investor Relations page and on the Securities and Exchange Commission's website at www.sec.gov. There is no assurance that any of the actions, events or results of the forward-looking statements will occur, or if any of them do, what impact they will have on our results of operations or financial condition. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they were made and are based on the estimates and opinions of management of LyondellBasell at the time the statements are made. LyondellBasell does not assume any obligation to update forward-looking statements should circumstances or management's estimates or opinions change, except as required by law.

Investors and APK Senior Management and Supervisory Board at the APK plant, Merseburg, Germany (Credit: APK AG/Tom Schulze)
Investors and APK Senior Management and Supervisory Board at the APK plant, Merseburg, Germany (Credit: APK AG/Tom Schulze)

 

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