LONDON—Malaysian conglomerate Petra Group is to invest $41.2 million to establish a Green Rubber business in the United Kingdom, according to a U.K. government statement.
One of the Kuala Lumpur-based group's flagship entities, Green Rubber offers DeLink technology for devulcanizing used rubber tires to provide sustainable raw materials.
The project will involve "the development of a production facility creating 110 jobs" and was among a series of climate-focused inward investments—together worth $13.3 billion—announced Oct. 19 by the U.K. government.
In response to European Rubber Journal's inquiries, Steve Nieto, senior vice president of global sales at Green Rubber, said Green Rubber already had "extensive plans" to set up in the U.K. and "had initially chosen a site just outside Newcastle to be our facility servicing the wider European market."
The Brexit referendum, however, forced the company to delay their plans, Nieto said, due to the uncertainty of the situation.
"There is now far more clarity, and we are confident of the U.K. market and will be proceeding," he added.
A site for Green Rubber is yet to be determined, but the company has its sights set on a few locations. "We hope to be able to make a decision on the location by the first quarter of next year," Nieto said, noting the first facility may be closer to the existing Petra Modular plant outside Birmingham, U.K.
"The facility we set up will include our patented DeLink-based automated devulcanization process capable of producing 24,000 metric tons of (ground rubber) compound a year—each line can produce 12,000 (metric tons a year)," he said.
"We will also be setting up a rubber crumbing line to support our facility, as tire-based rubber crumbs is our main raw material."