Shipping firm Norden strengthens its future supply of biofuels with minority stake in Mash Makes
Denmark-based international shipping company Norden has acquired a minority stake in Mash Makes, a Danish-Indian biofuel scale-up, which researches, develops and produces renewable fuels from biomass waste.
The investment is a strategic partnership from which Norden secures access to renewable fuels, specifically bio-oil, at favorable pricing.
According to Norden, the partnership places the shipping company at the forefront of the research and development of future renewable fuels, where Norden can also benefit from future renewable bio-oils once developed.
Prior to this new investment, Norden and Mash Makes have previously collaborated on the use of biofuels since 2021.
Based on this collaboration and subsequent in-depth review of the Mash Makes technical platform and business model, Norden gained insights into the viability and scalability of the Mash Makes biofuel platform.
“We cannot rely solely on traditional offtake agreements with fuel suppliers to achieve decarbonization at the necessary speed that climate change requires,” said Norden CEO Jan Rindbo. “We need to be a greater part of the supply chain, to both ensure significant volumes and attractive prices that can make Norden competitive in offering low-emission freight solutions to our customers.”
Decarbonizing customers’ supply chains
The investment is in line with Norden’s climate strategy of helping its customers decarbonize their supply chain and is also a “natural next step” in its biofuel journey, Norden stated.
In 2018, Norden was one of the first shipping companies to successfully trial 100 percent biofuel on a large ocean-going vessel.
“With this investment, we are turning our attention to the next generation of biofuels and scale-up consumption of biofuel,” said Adam Nielsen, Norden’s head of logistics and climate solutions. “The benefit of bio-oil is that it can be used in existing vessel technologies and bridge the gap between transitioning from fossil fuels to carbon-free fuels, which requires new vessel technologies.”
First trial in 2024 As a strategic partner, Norden’s role will be to help Mash Makes bring its bio-oil products to the marine fuel market and offtake biofuel for Norden’s fleet.
The production of Mash Makes’ first bio-oil product is in a late development stage and Norden expect to conduct the first trial onboard its vessels in early 2024.
Furthermore, the expectation is that Mash Makes can gradually ramp up its production and become a significant supplier to Norden’s fleet within the next three years in strategically important locations for decarbonizing global tramp shipping.
“We are excited and humbled by the fact that Norden—a uniquely capable purchaser in the biofuel space—has seen sufficient potential in our platform to not only invest, but also to enter a strategic offtake, and potential production-site financing, agreements with Mash,” said Jakob Andersen, CEO of MASH Makes. “We believe that this partnership will greatly accelerate the continued scale up of our business and put us on track for our gigaton-range greenhouse-gas reduction target.”
Mash Makes started as a project at the Technological University of Denmark in 2015, focused on technology that could convert various waste streams (mainly residue biomass) into different energy products.
After achieving a viable processing platform, the company is currently focused on commercial execution starting with the first production site (of many), which came online this May.