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British firm announces plans for Chinese graphene manufacturing facility

Posted on 09/02/2018

A British advanced materials engineering company has announced plans to build a graphene manufacturing centre in China.

Cheltenham-based Versarien has entered into a provisional agreement together with the Shandong Institute of Industrial Technology Fund, Jinan Qing Na Material Technology Co Ltd and Jinan Innovation Zone Administrative Committee with the view to establishing the “China-UK Jinan Graphene Industrial Park” in the Jinan Innovation Zone, Shandong Province.

Under the plans, a 100,000 square foot manufacturing facility will be built to produce and sell Versarien’s graphene product. Versarien will provide its intellectual property (IP) on a licensed basis together with production know how, whilst the other joint venture partners will provide the factory and funding for plant and equipment.

A second stage objective is the establishment of the first Chinese graphene industrial park, the “Jinan Graphene Valley” including a graphene research institute with funding coming from the joint venture partners. The total project cost is anticipated to be in the region of £55 million.

Neill Ricketts, CEO of Versarien, said: “It is intended that this facility will form the centre of the “Jinan Graphene Valley” and pave the way to Versarien establishing a world class base in the Asian region.  We have been afforded great support from the Chinese government and we are working with all parties to deliver this facility in record time and to capture the excitement and support for our product in China.”

KTN’s Head of Materials, Dr Robert Quarshie added. “This is fantastic news from a company we have had great pleasure in working with. As graphene’s capabilities and commercial applications become increasingly better understood, now is the time to invest in facilities which will enable cheaper, scalable production of graphene products. I’m also really pleased that Versarien will retain ownership of the intellectual property so that the UK sees the benefits of this new joint venture.”

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Image courtesy of Versarien