Renewable Lubricants Enters Canada

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Renewable Lubricants Inc. has entered Canada through the formation of a wholly owned subsidiary based in Ontario. The subsidiary will service the countrys emerging biobased lubricants market.

The Canadian market is in its infancy; its a growing market. We just want to be a part of that, Benjamin Garmier, RLIs vice president of marketing, told Lube Report.

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Currently, the company develops and produces its products at its Ohio blending plant, moving its offerings through distribution partners who stock and sell RLIs products. Renewable Lubricants Canada will use the same process.

We have had some distribution partners in Canada, but were looking for some new partners for sure. Weve talked to quite a few companies about doing different things with larger distribution, but I think its going to develop in the next year or two, said Garmier.

In the next few years, after the company establishes itself in Canada, RLI will consider purchasing or building a facility, he noted.

Oilseed Innovation Partners – a Canadian organization focused on the identification and commercialization of new opportunities for Canadian oilseeds – is helping RLI make the most of its entrance into the Great White North.

The two companies have been working together for quite some time, because RLI is one of the larger users of Canadian oilseeds. Helping us commercialize our products in Canada will only help OIP sell more oilseeds, explained Garmier.

The Hartville, Ohio-based RLI manufactures a variety of biobased lubricant offerings, including penetrant lubricant sprays, greases, chain oils, hydraulic fluids and engine oils. Their biobased products can be used as direct replacements for petroleum products, RLI claims.

Due to technological advances, said Rob Roe, OIPs director of bioproduct commercialization, [biobased lubricants] performance is now equal to or better than conventional petroleum lubricant products.

OIP also helps the American biobased lubricant manufacturer to network in Canada.

Besides bringing 250 products to Canada, RLI also brings six issue patents into the country. Canada has multiple markets in need of [biobased] lubricants. Renewable Lubricants has the ability to enter these markets with high performance patented technology. This technology is based on Canadian oilseed base stocks, Garmier noted.

Three of these patents involve vegetable base stock selection with certain antioxidants. One is for biobased food grade products, one covers biobased penetrating lubricants and the final patent uses boron nitride in vegetable oil. We have a great oven chain product that uses boron nitrate. We patented this product formulation with vegetable base oil, Garmier explained.

Strong issue patents in Canada gives us the opportunities to offer licenses for our technology so they can use it for private label. Its difficult to do that across the border without having a presence here, he added.

It is significant to have an American company decide to build a business here in Canada. This is a milestone in the development of the national [biobased lubricants] industry in our country, said OIP CEO Jeff Schmalz.

Roe believes that despite the Canadian biobased lubricants market being underdeveloped, it offers a lot of opportunity. Although there is a lack of statistical data on the countrys biobased lubricant market, he claims it has grown significantly over the past decade.

Ten years ago, key factors were not in place. There were biobased lubricants around, but the potential and opportunity for them was just not there. The technology to transform plant oils has really started to take root now, explained Roe in an interview.

OIPs long-term goals for the Canadian biobased lubricant industry include building market demand by encouraging [the] adoption of biobased lubricants by a wide range of users looking to reduce the environmental risks associated with petroleum-based products, and developing local operations, according to the organizations press release.

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