Holiferm and Sasol Chemicals

Holiferm and Sasol Chemicals Expand Collaboration to Develop and Market Sustainable Surfactants

Partnership will expand product portfolio to include two additional fermentation-based biosurfactants

Holiferm Limited and Sasol Chemicals, a business unit of Sasol Ltd. (JSE: SOL; NYSE: SSL), announced today a collaboration to produce and market rhamnolipids and mannosylerythritol lipids (MELs). This collaboration expands the partnership announced in March 2022 between the two companies to develop and commercialise another biosurfactant product, sophorolipids.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20230125005034/en/

The partnership will use Holiferm’s proprietary technology to develop the fermentation-derived biosurfactants. Sasol and Holiferm will develop and commercialise formulations and applications for the new molecules.

Biosurfactants use natural materials to produce surfactants, which are key ingredients in detergents, cleaning products and personal care products. Sophorolipids, rhamnolipids and MELs are all glycolipids made through fermentation, using yeast or bacteria to convert vegetable oils and/or sugars into final product. The Holiferm process offers an extensive reduction in carbon footprint compared with conventional surfactants.

“The imminent commercial launch of our second and third products validates Holiferm’s process to develop process technologies to produce chemicals from natural raw materials and enable their broad commercialisation,” said Vicky De Groof, Chief Technical Officer of Holiferm. “It is also a testament to the exceptional work of the laboratory team.”

“By expanding our product portfolio from sophorolipids to include rhamnolipids and MELs, we aim to provide our customers a platform of solutions based solely on biosurfactants,” said Silke Hoppe, Vice President of Essential Care Chemicals for Sasol Chemicals. “Their carbon footprint as well as their mildness and high performance places these products in a leading position in today’s biosurfactant market.”

Since March 2022, Sasol and Holiferm have collaborated on research and development into accelerating innovation to help meet the growing demand for sustainable solutions in primary surfactants. This has now been expanded to include developing processes to manufacture rhamnolipids and MELs. The companies’ joint aspiration is to prepare for testing at pilot plant scale, before they begin a full manufacturing process at Holiferm’s Wallasey plant.

About Holiferm Limited

Holiferm Limited is based in the North West of the United Kingdom with sites in Manchester, Daresbury and Wallasey. It was founded on the back of patented fermentation with integrated gravity separation technology developed at the University of Manchester. As a company we aim to disrupt the market and replace petrochemicals with our naturally produced biochemicals. Our first solution, biosurfactants have applications in many cleaning products including cosmetics, skin care, shower gels and surface cleansers.

About Sasol Chemicals

Sasol Chemicals is a solutions provider focused on sustainability, circularity and specialties. It fulfills its purpose of “Innovating for a better world” by offering a broad, state-of-the-art portfolio of specialty and commodity chemicals for a wide range of applications and industries.

Our solutions are used by more than 6,500 customers, in 118 countries, in countless products that improve the quality of life for people around the world. They also provide the building blocks for a sustainable future by helping reduce energy usage, waste and packaging, and by providing solutions to the renewable energy industry.

Sasol Chemicals is a business of Sasol Limited, a leading chemicals and energy company focused on creating sustainable value for our stakeholders. For more information, visit the Sasol Chemicals website.


Holiferm Limited:
Andrew Hardwick
Executive Assistant

Sasol Chemicals:
Russell Johnson
Head of Global Corporate Affairs

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