The global decarbonization investor Carbon Direct Capital Management has invested €15 million ($17.57 million) for a 6.98% equity stake in the Calix (ASX:CXL) subsidiary, the LEILAC Group. LEILAC Group is the dedicated entity for the commercialization and development of Calix’s carbon capture technology.
In addition to the deal, Calix entered into a license agreement with the LEILAC Group under which Calix will receive 30% of royalties earned by the LEILAC Group from deployment of the CO2 capture technology, regardless of Calix’s equity stake in the LEILAC Group.
LEILAC Group is the exclusive licensee of Calix’s Low Emissions Intensity Lime and Cement (LEILAC) CO2 capture technology. LEILAC is also a European Union Horizon 2020 research and innovation project using Calix’s technology to enable Europe’s cement and lime industries to reduce their carbon emissions.
Accelerating Carbon Capture In Europe
The carbon capture company LEILAC Group also comprises Calix (Europe) Ltd (UK) and its subsidiaries. LEILAC technology was piloted at HeidelbergCement’s plant in Lixhe, Belgium in 2016 with a following demonstration plant at Hannover in Germany. The project was piloted at 25 000 tons of CO2 capture capacity per annum and was scaled up to 100 000 tons p/a at the plant in Germany.
The carbon capture investment from Carbon Direct will be used by the LEILAC Group to accelerate and continue to de-risk deployment of the technology. It will help to speed the commercial and technical optimization as additional resources will be deployed in engineering and research. The deal will also help the company to identify the optimal financial and strategic partners to support the critical next phase of the development of the carbon capture business.
Carbon Direct Capital Management is the investment arm of Carbon Direct that targets direct investments into leading carbon dioxide removal and utilization technologies. The company also operates a scientific advisory business offering its services to leading corporations on how to achieve their decarbonization commitments. Carbon Direct’s advisory includes clients such as Microsoft and Shopify.
“We are very impressed by the technical and commercial rigor of the LEILAC team… We are delighted to support Phil, Calix, and the LEILAC Group as they seek to scale LEILAC into cement and lime plants around the world,” said Carbon Direct founder and CEO Jonathan Goldberg.
The LEILAC innovative technology involves a patented kiln design that separates CO2 emissions from lime and cement production without significant energy penalty. The kiln is developed to use a variety of input fuels and is also easily electrified to allow decarbonization of lime and cement production by switching to renewable energy.
Follow-on projects are under the pipeline to be developed with interested parties – six commercial-scale cement and four commercial-scale lime plants. Two projects are now moving into more detailed planning under previously announced agreements.
The investing in carbon capture technology by Carbon Direct is an acceleration of its adoption in Europe and could be a sign carbon capture stocks are on the rise. The 100,000 tons of CO2 per year scale for a HeidelbergCement plant in Germany is also being funded by the EU Horizon 2020 scheme to decarbonize the cement industry in Europe, which shows major projects are now moving ahead with sizable investments from countries and management firms.