Biodiesel start-up hauls in $214 million

Seattle-based company hopes to be producing 400 million gallons of alternative fuel a year by the end of 2008.

Seattle-based biodiesel maker Imperium Renewables announced on Wednesday that its Series B financing round has roped in a total of $214 million, a possible record for the American biodiesel industry.

The investment comes from two sources: $113 million of private equity and $101 million from a senior secured credit facility that will be arranged by Societe Generale. According to a statement from Imperium, the funding is believed to be the United States' largest-ever private-equity investment in a biodiesel company.

Imperium plans to use the money invested for opening new biodiesel plants around the world, including in Hawaii and in northeastern states. Meanwhile, the company is of its Port of Grays Harbor plant in coastal Washington; it expects to finish building the facility in July.

Cumulatively, the Grays Harbor plant and three other planned Imperium facilities are expected to optimally generate up to 400 million gallons (10 million barrels) of biodiesel per year by the end of 2008. The Washington plant alone will be capable of up to 100 million gallons per year, which will make it the largest biodiesel facility in the country.

Biodiesel, which is fuel created from vegetable oils--including, potentially, the residual fat and oil from fast-food restaurants--is a hot topic these days with all the talk of a .

Currently, Imperium and subsidiary Seattle Biodiesel already operate refineries that produce biodiesel out of farm-grown crops like soy and palm oil.

Featured Video
This content is rated TV-MA, and is for viewers 18 years or older. Are you of age?
Sorry, you are not old enough to view this content.

iPhone 6S chip controversy over battery life

Not all new iPhones have the same processor chip, but Apple says differences in performance are minimal. Apple also pulls ad-blocking apps over privacy concerns, and Netflix raises its price again.

by Bridget Carey