Further investment in UK-based transformational low-cost, zero-emission hydrogen start-up
CEMEX Ventures, Cemex’s corporate venture capital (CVC) and open innovation unit, has increased its stake in HiiROC, a world-leading start-up with a novel proprietary process for low-cost, zero-emission hydrogen production.
Hydrogen is a high-potential energy solution for the construction industry as a whole and for the cement sector in particular, that when used, significantly reduces the industry’s dependence on fossil fuels and reduces CO2 emissions with a breakthrough approach.
Founded in 2019, HiiROC is a UK-based start-up that produces cost-competitive and zero-emission hydrogen through its proprietary process of thermal plasma electrolysis. Whilst hydrogen is becoming an increasingly promising alternative energy source and feedstock for a wide and diverse set of industrial processes, existing solutions are traditionally either high emission or high cost.
Alternatively, HiiROC’s technology stands out, producing high-grade hydrogen that requires a fraction of the energy consumed by water electrolysis, and avoids the need for intensive carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) methods required for traditional steam methane reforming.
Moreover, HiiROC’s production units are modular and scalable, use no water, and carbon black, a co-product of the hydrogen production process, becomes an additional area of opportunity to further decarbonize heavy industries.
‘This news comes at a critical moment when COP28 has brought the world together to address and refocus the climate agenda and buckle down on the responsibility of governments and private corporations to deliver on their decarbonization objectives ahead of 2030’, said Gonzalo Galindo, head of Cemex Ventures.
‘With our increased investment in HiiROC, we are especially proud to be number one in the use of hydrogen in the cement sector and are committed to keep scouting new ways to deploy hydrogen at a grand scale at Cemex’s 60 cement and grinding plants.’
Through their corporate venture capital arm, Cemex initially invested in the breakthrough start-up in 2022 and are planning large-scale deployment of HiiROC’s thermal plasma technology to reduce their consumption of fossil fuels and help decarbonize their operations.
With this strategic partnership, Cemex intend to initially increase their hydrogen injection capacity at their crucial cement plant in Rugby and expect to eventually deploy HiiROC’s technology gradually across their EMEA operations.