German APEX Group goes public with strong hydrogen project pipeline

APEX Group and exceet Group SCA have signed an agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of APEX (specifically APEX Nova Holding GmbH) by Exceet.

Upon completion of the transaction, APEX will be listed on the stock exchange under the umbrella of Exceet. APEX will receive approximately EUR 87 million in fresh capital as part of the transaction, of which approx. EUR 70 million will be used to realize the significant project pipeline of more than 1.7 GW and EUR 17 million to repay financial liabilities. In addition, the company is increasing its visibility for customers. APEX’s experienced and technically skilled management team led by CEO Peter Rößner will continue to lead the company’s operations.

APEX, founded in 2000, has been fully focused on hydrogen electrolysis plants since 2012, making it one of the pioneers in this field. APEX’s goal is to become an internationally established developer and operator of hydrogen plants. In its core business, APEX develops, builds, and sells or operates green hydrogen electrolysis plants for the decarbonization of industry, infrastructure and mobility, covering the entire value chain for hydrogen plants. Water (H2O), with energy of renewable origin such as photovoltaics or wind power, is separated into hydrogen (H2) and oxygen (O2) in APEX’s electrolysis plants. This “green” hydrogen, obtained exclusively from renewable energies, can then be stored, used directly as a source of energy or transported to the place of use. Hydrogen electrolysis thus solves the core problems of renewable energies by making them storable, transportable and being available in a versatile energy carrier.

APEX focuses on hydrogen plants with an electrolysis capacity of less than 1 GW. These are used to decarbonize industrial value chains and to produce green hydrogen and hydrogen derivatives such as LOHC (liquid organic hydrogen carriers) and e-fuels. They are used, for example, in the steel, chemical and cement industries as well as other energy intensive industries. In addition, the company offers facilities for infrastructure and logistics, especially for industrial use in warehouses, ports and production facilities. The solutions are being developed at the company’s Rostock/Laage location, where more than EUR 50 million have already been invested in the company’s own state-of-the-art industrial park.

APEX’s project pipeline currently comprises approximately 50 projects with a total electrolysis capacity of more than 1.7 GW. The company has mature technology and has been operating one of the largest grid-connected hydrogen plants in Europe at the company site since 2020. The electrolysis capacity of this plant is to be increased from the current 2 MW to up to 22 MW by 2025. APEX has comprehensive performance and production data from the operation of this plant, which is incorporated into the design of new projects. In addition, APEX operates the first hydrogen filling station for heavy-duty vehicles in the German federal state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. On behalf of the energy companies EWE and swb, the company is also currently building an electrolysis plant with a capacity of 10 MW to reduce CO2 emissions at the ArcelorMittal steel mill in Bremen with a project volume of more than EUR 17 million. On behalf of Energiedienst AG (Rheinfelden), a subsidiary of the energy company EnBW Energie Baden-Württemberg AG, a 5 MW electrolysis plant for the production of green hydrogen with a project volume in the double-digit million range is being implemented.

100 MW large-scale project expected to generate annual revenues of EUR 45 million for APEX starting in 2027

One flagship project is the ongoing development of a 100 MW electrolysis plant in Rostock/Laage by APEX with a production capacity of more than 7,500 tons of green hydrogen per year, which can then be fed into a pipeline. The plant, which has an expected investment volume of EUR 199 million, will be operated by APEX itself after its planned completion in 2027 and will generate recurring revenues of EUR 45 million annually in line with current expectations.1 For the implementation of this large-scale project, which will play a significant role in the German hydrogen infrastructure, APEX was selected in 2021 among more than 400 projects that applied for funding. This is one of 62 major projects selected for European IPCEI (Important Project of Common European Interest) funding. Funding for the early start of measures for the project has already been provided. To put this in perspective: A car can travel about 600 km with 5 kg of hydrogen. Around 70 kg of hydrogen are needed to produce one ton of “green” steel.

Peter Rößner, CEO of APEX, said: “APEX is one of the leading developers and operators of hydrogen electrolysis plants for industry, infrastructure and mobility. With our technology and planning expertise, we have already prevailed in various tenders ranging from industrial projects to major EU projects.”

Roland Lienau, Chairman of Exceet, said: “Wth the capital provided by Exceet as part of the transaction, APEX can now realize its well-stocked project pipeline. At the same time, this is a turning point for Exceet, where we are discontinuing our activities as an investment holding company and are now fully focusing our business purpose on APEX.”

In addition to hydrogen electrolysis plants, APEX develops state-of-the-art hydrogen pressure storage systems using carbon fibers and cooperates with Fraunhofer Institute in Rostock in the field of development, among other companies. APEX is also already working with the Leibniz Institute for Catalysis on another milestone in hydrogen storage: the chemical storage of hydrogen, which then no longer has to take place under pressure, making stored hydrogen more compact, safer and easier to transport. APEX has already secured two patents for the chemical storage of hydrogen in a liquid hydrogen carrier (formic acid).

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