Cemex Ventures Increases Stake in Hydrogen Startup

Cemex Ventures, Cemex’s corporate venture capital and open innovation unit, increased its stake in HiiROC, a UK-based startup 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. When used, it significantly reduces the industry’s dependence on fossil fuels and reduce CO2 emissions with a breakthrough approach. 

Founded in 2019, HiiROC produces cost-competitive and zero-emission hydrogen through its proprietary process of thermal plasma electrolysis. Its technology stands out by 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. Furthermore, 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.”

Cemex said it is planning large-scale deployment of HiiROC’s thermal plasma technology to reduce its consumption of fossil fuels and help decarbonize its operations. 

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