Joule, Red Rock Biofuels plan merger

By Red Rock Biofuels | November 13, 2015

On Nov. 12, Joule, the pioneer of liquid fuels from recycled CO2, and Red Rock Biofuels, a leading developer of renewable jet and diesel fuel biorefineries, announced their intent to merge. Red Rock adds a proven technology pathway to Joule’s own Helioculture technology and strengthens Joule’s platform for global supply of carbon neutral fuels.

The transaction is expected to close during the coming 30 days.

In association with this merger, after a year of important service at a critical transition phase for the company, Joule also announced that President and CEO, industry veteran Mr. Serge Tchuruk, will return to his previous board role. Dr. Brian Baynes, a current board member of both Joule and Red Rock and partner at Flagship Ventures, will succeed Tchuruk and will lead Joule as it enters a commercial deployment phase.

Red Rock Biofuels leverages a commercially proven Fischer-Tropsch technology to convert sustainably harvested biomass residues from forests and sawmills into jet fuel and diesel products. The company is poised to begin construction of its first refinery located in Lakeview, Oregon, in early 2016. The project is supported by a $70 million grant from the USDA, U.S. Department of Navy and U.S. DOE, and the company has entered into substantial offtake agreements with Southwest Airlines and FedEx for the fuel that will be produced.

"By merging Red Rock Biofuels with Joule, we intend to accelerate the commercialization of carbon-neutral fuels and continue to build a world leading company," said Tchuruk, outgoing president and CEO of Joule. He added, "Joule’s proprietary platform provides a path towards carbon-neutral mobility and Red Rock Biofuels will add an immediate commercial capability to produce renewable diesel and jet fuel, complementing our unique direct pathway through direct conversion of CO2 to drop-in fuels. I am very proud to have been part of this important transformation of Joule, which will now significantly speed up our commercialization. Red Rock’s Lakeview project will continue as planned with its current management team, beginning construction in 2016 and producing at a scale of 15 million gallons of renewable diesel and jet fuel when completed."

Tchuruk continued, "I am furthermore very pleased to see that Dr. Brian Baynes will take over as President and CEO as I now retire from the position. I look forward to continuing to support the exciting development of the merged company through my active participation on its board of directors."

"The world’s need for low carbon transportation fuels has never been greater. Having worked closely with both Joule and Red Rock, I am very pleased to be able to combine Red Rock’s near-term, commercial supply of drop-in low carbon fuels, with Joule’s novel and highly scalable low carbon fuel production platform," said Baynes, incoming president and CEO. "The Red Rock team also adds significant strength in project development and operations to Joule’s R&D expertise. We are seeing continued acceleration of our direct CO2 to fuel technology development, and the Red Rock platform will increase project opportunities worldwide. I look forward to working with the extended management teams of Joule and Red Rock to implement a new strategy that leverages operational synergies and shifts our focus to near-term commercial production of low carbon, renewable fuels. I am excited to have the opportunity to lead the company through this important time as we address one of our planet’s most pressing needs."

"We are excited to merge with Joule and enhance our bio-refinery platform to include Joule’s innovative CO2 conversion technology and further reduce the carbon intensity of our renewable, drop-in jet and diesel fuels. Integrating Joule’s transformative technology into our platform positions the combined company for global development of low carbon fuels," said Terry Kulesa CEO of Red Rock.

As part of this merger and expansion of the commercial pathways, Joule has also restructured its business operations to streamline resources and focus on its two commercial pathways.