Chelsea boss Abramovich-backed company to build world’s largest at Industrial Chemicals Plant

A COMPANY that recently received a cash boost from a company owned by Chelsea boss Roman Abramovich is set to build a ground-breaking energy system in Thurrock.

In November AFC Energy, received a £4.9m European Union grant to create the world’s largest alkaline fuel cell energy generation system reports proactiveinvestors.co.uk.

It will be built in Thurrock on the site of a new chlor-alkaline plant owned by Industrial Chemicals Limited (ICL).

The low-cost fuel cell system will be installed in stages at the ICL facility with the aim of eventually generating around one megawatt of electricity, or enough energy to power 500 homes.

AFC will hope then to build on this success with other partnerships.

Ian Williamson, chief executive of AFC Energy (LON:AFC), said the targets for the current year are to deliver the planned large-scale industrial chemicals operation and to automate its manufacturing process for fuel cells.

“Doing those two things will be the focus of the company,” he told Proactive Investors.

“We will also be out there looking for new commercial partners and we are looking on a global basis for those,” said Williamson.

“We have a fair number of partners in Europe, but we may look beyond Europe to try and find the next one.”
He was speaking after the release of full-year results, which were largely an historic record of the progress made to date.

While revenues rose more than tenfold in 2012, the loss was still £3.8mln. However, AFC’s cash position is strong with £11mln in the bank. This was boosted by an investment of £8.7mln by Ervington, a company owned by Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich, in October.

“We have enough money to last another two to three years. Within that period of time we expect commercial revenues to flow in a greater way that currently are,” Williamson said.

“What we are hoping to do in the next two or three years is get to a point where our commercial revenues balance our spend and go beyond that to make some money.”

The shares, which have advanced 53% in the last year, fell 4% today as the stock succumbed to profit-taking.

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