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Mannheim, 2 June 2008 ? CropEnergies AG signed an agreement for the acquisition of French alcohol producer Ryssen Alcools S.A.S in Paris on 2 June 2008.
The seller is French sugar producer Saint Louis Sucre, which is a member of the Südzucker Group. The acquisition of Ryssen Alcools S.A.S is due to be completed at the end of June 2008. With this move CropEnergies is expanding its activities in the important French market as planned and will be increasing its capacities for the production of bioethanol for fuel applications by another 100,000 m³ of bioethanol per year.
Ryssen Alcools was founded in 1829 as the family-owned firm Distilleries Ryssen. The company has been part of the Südzucker subsidiary Saint Louis Sucre since 1989 and was fully taken over in 2006. In the past 2007/08 financial year, which ended on 29 February, Ryssen Alcools achieved revenues of over ? 60 million with 49 employees. The activities of Ryssen Alcools are divided into two segments: The dehydration or drying of raw alcohol for the fuel sector was recently expanded to 100,000 m³ of bioethanol per year. A large part of the quantities produced are for the French market. Ryssen is also a specialist for the purification or rectification of raw alcohol for traditional and technical applications. The high-quality products are adapted flexibly to the wishes of customers in the beverages and cosmetics industries as well as the pharmaceutical and chemical industries. In this segment Ryssen has an annual capacity of 80,000 m³.
The Ryssen Alcools production facilities are situated in a favourable logistical position in the port of Dunkirk. From there the refineries in the ARA (Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp) area can be supplied quickly and at low cost. The site also has facilities for loading and unloading rail and road tankers. CropEnergies has already been operating a tank storage facility with a capacity of 20,000 m³ in the immediate vicinity of Ryssen Alcools since 2006.
The Ryssen acquisition is part of CropEnergies AG?s expansion strategy and is an important step in strengthening its position as one of Europe?s leading bioethanol producers. CropEnergies will be increasing its capacity to over 700,000 m³ of bioethanol per year at the end of the 2008/09 financial year. At the same time the company is broadening its product range to include high-grade alcohol for traditional and technical applications (beverage alcohol, perfumes, cosmetics). With the integration of Ryssen Alcools and the start-up of the facility in Wanze, Belgium, at the end of 2008, CropEnergies is superbly positioned in the growing European bioethanol market.
The CropEnergies AG
The CropEnergies Group a member of the Südzucker Group is an established leading European producer of bioethanol for the fuel sector.
Crop stands for creative regeneration of power. Energy in the form of bioethanol is produced from renewable resources grain and sugar beets. With subsidiaries in Germany, France, and Belgium, CropEnergies has established itself as a bioethanol producer in a growing market in just a few years and it operates today?s largest bioethanol plant in Europe in Zeitz, Saxony-Anhalt, Germany. CropEnergies considers itself a pioneer on the German bioethanol market and expands its market position in Europe. The shares of CropEnergies AG (ISIN DE000A0LAUP1) are listed in the Prime Standard at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.