New investment for innovative waste plant

Investment summit: Finance Yorkshire's Ash Chopra, third left and Alex McWhirter, right with, from left, Sterecycle's Alistair Shotliff, James Crankshaw, Tom Shields and Richard Moulson on top of a pile of Sterefibre, which can be used as a fuel, as top soil for reclamation or to grow biofuel crops.
Investment summit: Finance Yorkshire's Ash Chopra, third left and Alex McWhirter, right with, from left, Sterecycle's Alistair Shotliff, James Crankshaw, Tom Shields and Richard Moulson on top of a pile of Sterefibre, which can be used as a fuel, as top soil for reclamation or to grow biofuel crops.
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Waste treatment and renewable power company Sterecycle is expanding its Rotherham plant and creating 17 new jobs after securing a £5.1 million boost from four investors.

The Templeborough-based company will increase its waste processing capacity from 100,000 tonnes a year to 175,000 tonnes a year by installing a new generation of equipment.

Finance Yorkshire is investing £1.25 million in Sterecycle’s expansion, with German businessman Lars Windhorst joining existing investors, including Aston Hill Financial from Canada, in contributing the remaining £3.85 million.

Sterecycle chief executive, Tom Shields, said: “We’re very pleased to have two new backers on board and for the ongoing support of our existing investors.

“The investment from the Finance Yorkshire Equity Fund will go towards the purchase and installation of new autoclave equipment, which has been manufactured locally in Sheffield by Mayflower Engineering, and the further expansion of the Rotherham plant.

“This added capacity will take us to around break-even for the Group as a whole and increase landfill diversion.

“We’re planning for a public listing next year so that we can raise additional funds to grow the business further and develop more sites across the UK.”

Ash Chopra, from Finance Yorkshire’s equity fund, said: “The desire to find alternatives to simply sending waste to landfill is high on the political and environmental agendas. Land-filling waste is not a viable long-term option with regulatory driven penalties pushing the cost of landfill up. The technology in use at the company provides a viable “greener” alternative to landfill. We are delighted with this investment as a further 17 full time jobs will be created and the company has raised an additional £3.85 million as other investors followed our lead.”

Sterecycle takes household and trade waste and processes it in a rotating oven, fed with steam at several times atmospheric pressure.

The system separates out recyclable material and produces a compost like fibre, which can also be used as a fuel.

Sterecycle’s Rotherham plant is the world’s first commercial autoclave waste treatment plant and, since opening in June 2008, it has managed to divert up to 70 per cent of the waste it processes from landfill sites.