Switzerland-based energy company VARO Energy announced today the acquisition of biogas manufacturer Bio Energy Coevorden (BEC), alongside plans to more than double the company’s key biogas manufacturing facility.
At a planned capacity of 650 GWh by 2026, the facility would be one of 3 largest biogas facilities in Europe.
Following the transaction, BEC founders the Jacobs family will retain a 15% stake, and Van Drie Group will continue to hold 5%.
Niek Jacobs, director of BEC, said:
“This allows us to achieve our objectives more quickly and we remain directly involved with the company as a family.”
Biogas is produced from organic waste, such as agricultural, industrial, and household wastes, in anaerobic digesters at waste facilities or landfill sites, and then further processed to produce biomethane/bio-LNG. Biomethane is chemically identical to fossil-based natural gas, but has substantially lower lifetime greenhouse gas emissions, enabling it to support the decarbonization of hard-to-abate sectors such as road transport and heavy industry, without needing to replace existing transmission and distribution infrastructure.
According to VARO, the acquisition comes amid strong demand growth for biogas, which is expected to increase 3X across Europe by 2030.
Dev Sanyal, VARO CEO, said:
“Largescale biogas facilities have an important role in accelerating Europe’s energy transition – offering an alternative to conventional fuels at scale with emissions 90% lower than natural gas as well as allowing our refineries to replace their natural gas consumption with biomethane products with a lower carbon intensity. Growth in biogas will further support Europe’s energy security by diversifying supply.”
The transaction follows the launch last year by VARO of its new ESG strategy, “ONE VARO,” including plans to invest $3.5 billion in sustainable energies businesses over the next 5 years and to help customers meet net zero ambitions, and to achieve net zero across all emissions scopes by 2040.
“Last year we set out our ambitious ONE VARO Transformation strategy to be the partner of choice for customers in the energy transition and to be net zero by 2040. Today’s announcement is a significant step towards accelerating our strategy by building a leading position in biogas in Europe.”