Graphene NanoChem (AIM: GRPH), the performance nanochemicals and advanced materials company, announces an update on the progress the Group is making on a number of fronts with regard to the production and commercialisation of graphene.

Joint Venture with National Innovation Agency of Malaysia

Graphene NanoChem is pleased to announce that Platinum NanoChem Sdn Bhd, a wholly owned subsidiary, has entered into a joint venture agreement with the National Innovation Agency of Malaysia, for the development of a national graphene hub.

The hub, due to be launched in the second quarter of 2014, will focus on the development of graphene and the commercial applications for graphene. The hub, both physical and virtual, will facilitate the collaboration of enablers and infrastructure providers for industry, both inside and outside of Malaysia.

The National Innovation Agency of Malaysia has been set up by the Malaysian Government to drive the development of new industries in Malaysia, and to encourage international trade through developing Malaysia as a centre for pioneering technologies. The graphene hub is one of the first steps in this process, and Graphene NanoChem’s involvement will enable the Group to leverage commercial opportunities through the hub and drive expansion into a diverse range of industrial applications.

A leading tier-1 global consultant (selected and funded by the National Innovation Agency of Malaysia) has been appointed to develop the graphene hub. Access to their proprietary tools and databases, industry knowledge, personnel and experience will enable Graphene NanoChem to clearly determine routes to market for its various graphene applications and to accelerate progress in the development of new applications.

Expansion of Graphene Production Facility

Graphene NanoChem is also pleased to announce the installation of a second reactor at its Nanomaterials facility, in Senawang, near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The new reactor will double the Group’s production capacity of graphene to two tonnes per annum and is the first step in the Group’s planned capacity expansion. Graphene NanoChem will continue to expand the production capacity of the Nanomaterials Facility, based on market demand throughout 2014 and 2015, and further expansion is expected to occur without disruption to the existing reactors.

PlatDrill

In November 2013, Platinum NanoChem Sdn Bhd, a wholly-owned subsidiary, entered into an exclusive product formulation and marketing agreement with Scomi Oiltools Sdn Bhd (“Scomi”) to deliver a range of formulated PlatDrill™ series for the oilfield chemicals market.

Graphene NanoChem remains confident of the near-term deployment of PlatDrill. The Group is working in conjunction with Scomi to develop a range of formulations that will meet requirements for drilling fluids in different geographical locations where Scomi is currently servicing customers. The Group is also developing a range of complementary products that can be offered by Scomi alongside the PlatDrill drilling fluids.

Jespal Deol, Chief Executive Officer of Graphene NanoChem, commented:”We are very pleased with the progress we have made in the production of graphene this year. We believe that the Group is closer to being able to generate substantial revenue from bulk volumes of graphene-enhanced products than any of our competitors, globally.  Furthermore, the material has many industrial applications and the expansion of our production facility enables us to explore these in more depth whilst maximising the introduction and collaboration opportunities offered by the joint venture with the National Innovation Agency of Malaysia.

“We are very pleased the Malaysian government has identified graphene as a key material for driving technologies and commercial applications. We look forward to working with the National Innovation Agency of Malaysia to establish Malaysia as a global hub for the innovation of commercial applications for graphene and to Graphene NanoChem being established as the partner of choice for all those involved.