The Hague, June 28 2018 – Development Bank FMO is backing the export of Dutch family firm Aircrete’s sustainable brick and panel production technology, which uses 20% less energy than conventional manufacturing. An EUR 4.8 million loan will finance the production equipment as well as the commissioning of the equipment at the recently established Argentine company Brimax and boost the share of lightweight concrete on the Argentinian market.
Aircrete is based in Oldenzaal, north of Enschede and primarily focuses on emerging markets. The company’s lightweight concrete technology (in the industry known as autoclaved aerated concrete) also saves at least 20% on energy consumption in buildings through its superior insulation properties and has the further benefit of avoiding much of the soil erosion associated with clay extraction for the production of traditional bricks.
Janet Nieboer, Head of FMO NL Business: "Thanks to Dutch technology, home construction in Argentina is becoming more sustainable and cost efficient for a very energy intensive industry. Given the size of the Argentine market and the dominance of traditional bricks, the growth potential for Brimax is huge."
Aerated concrete has a very small share of the Argentine market for building materials at approximately 3%, but this is forecast to double and to gain further momentum with the Brimax investment due to the technology’s energy efficiency and cost advantages.
Brimax was established by local project developers and is located in the northern province of Santa Fe. The expansion in the company’s lightweight concrete output will supply the construction of 5,000 houses every year in Argentina’s social housing sector.
Daniel van Maanen, CFO of Aircrete said: "Argentina is the third country in Latin America, after Mexico and Brazil, where Aircrete is active. We have designed the factory in such a way that Brimax has the flexibility to easily and rapidly increase production capacity and also manufacture complete lightweight concrete panels."
The FMO loan is insured by Dutch credit insurer Atradius. FMO NL Business supports Dutch companies who want to invest in or export to emerging markets.