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Mitsui to participate in Norwegian CFRP pressure tank manufacturer

News International-French

22 Mar 2016

Mitsui entered into an agreement to acquire 25% of shares in Hexagon Composites. The company plans to invest a total of approximately 88 million euros in the manufacturer of plastic-lined carbon fiber reinforced pressure cylinders.

The company has also concluded a business alliance agreement with Hexagon.

Action to tackle global warming has become an urgent international priority. The development of lighter parts and materials to reduce energy consumption by transportation equipment, especially in motor vehicles, is seen as an important approach to the solution of this problem, and the market for lightweight materials, such as carbon fiber, is expected to expand rapidly. Lightweight composite cylinders supplied by Hexagon offer durable, safe solutions to meet the expanding need for the transportation and storage of natural gas and other fuels. Recently Hexagon has built on its track record in this field by developing high-pressure hydrogen cylinders for fuel cell vehicles, which run on hydrogen fuel without emitting noxious substances.

For almost 20 years, Mitsui and Hexagon have built a partnership centered on sales of composite cylinders. By drawing on this equity participation and business alliance, Mitsui will use its business assets and global network to expand Hexagon's business, while also contributing to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector.

Mitsui strives to develop business initiatives in seven key strategic domains defined in its new medium-term management plan. This investment spans two of those key strategic domains: "mineral resources and materials", and "mobility". In April 2015, Mitsui signed an agreement concerning cooperation on composite materials research and an equipment lease agreement with the Innovative Composite Materials Research and Development Center ("ICC") of the Kanazawa Institute of Technology. Mitsui and ICC have since commenced collaborative development of new manufacturing methods for automotive parts and other products made of carbon fiber composite materials.

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