Norway-headed biomass and waste-derived fuel aggregators and suppliers Geminor AS has revealed plans to expand operations in 2023 by focusing on the Spanish market. According to Kai Schöpwinkel, Senior Business Development Manager at Geminor, Spain, in addition to France, can play a "key role in securing a balance in the material recycling and energy recovery markets in Europe."
From offices in Bordeaux in France, Kai Schöpwinkel will be leading Geminor’s move into Spain, as well as a planned expansion of operations in France.
According to him, both the recycling and energy recovery markets are growing in the two countries, making them more important than ever in a European context.
Both Spain and France are markets that can make a difference and create a better balance of waste resources in the EU. Connecting these market opportunities to our industry portfolio in countries such as Germany, the Baltics, and the Nordics will be our primary focus moving onwards, Kai Schöpwinkel explained.
Spain is predominantly an offtake market, where we will be focusing on waste wood for material recycling, as well as Solid Recovered Fuel (SRF) for cement production. Still, Spain has the potential for more export of materials for recycling, and we will be searching for new streams with our partners in Italy and France, said Kai Schöpwinkel.
France brings quality fractions
Geminor entered the French market in 2019, commencing the export of paper and cardboard but also CSR – “Combustible solide de recuperation” – which is a residual fraction based on sorted wood and textile foam from take-back furniture.
France is a surplus market where landfill still is an alternative for many industry players. Our intention is to export more of the biogenic waste for energy recovery, which is in deficit in most parts of Europe due to the economic decline. France has a well-developed system for the sorting of residual waste, which in EU terms gives us quality material for export, Kai Schöpwinkel explained.
Geminor seeks to develop these streams further.
The present lack of wood and biomass, mostly due to the absence of wood from Russia and Belarus, is turning into a challenge all over Europe. This is a situation that France can remedy by providing biomass streams to other markets, Kai Schöpwinkel said.
A question of business culture
Moving into a new market normally means adapting to new business and industry cultures. This is also the case when Geminor enters Spain.
Many companies spend years climatizing to a new business culture, struggling to find business partners due to a lack of regional knowledge, and even language issues. We put attention to these details, building trust from day one and securing personal business relations and presence. This is crucial in order to succeed in Mediterranean countries such as Spain, ended Kai Schöpwinkel.