Tirupati Graphite PLC (LON:TGR) said it is starting sales and bulk supplies of expandable graphite products to several large consumers across the European Union and European Economic Area after gaining certification from the European Chemicals Agency.
The fully integrated producer of natural flake graphite, speciality graphite and graphene, said its subsidiary Tirupati Speciality Graphite has gained REACH certification for its CarboflameX-branded range of expandable graphite products for marketing and sales into the EU/EEA.
Supply to European customers, where Tirupati said demand has been boosted recently as users look to source products outside of China, has begun after successfully completing pilot trials and qualifications with customers.
REACH certification also allows the company to market and sell across the EU/EEA its newly developed foam technology and GrafEN45545 product, which is compliant with railway vehicle fire protection regulations, the company said.
The range of expandable graphite products have various applications including flame retardancy in construction, automobile and aerospace industries, gaskets and sealings, thermal management, flame retardant coatings and many more niche areas
“Having already marketed and completed several pilot trials, this opens access for us to capitalise on the fast-growing appetite for these products in Europe where we anticipate ramping up sales, and into those countries globally that have adopted the REACH standard,” chief executive Shishir Poddar said.
“Notably, the Company's unique GrafEN45545 product is compliant with one of the most stringent flame retardancy and toxicity standards further adding value to our range of expandable graphite products.
“This bodes well given the upcoming UK Fire Safety Bill, which is targeted to address issues to ensure fire safety in all buildings. The registration will open more doors for us, in addition to qualifications already achieved and we expect additional successes from our foam technology collaborations.”
Ahead of completing first sales, Tirupati had undertaken various analytical and characterisation tests to ensure compliance of the products with the ECHA standards and EU Regulation (EC) N° 1907/2006.
The results of these tests and other data were submitted to the ECHA as part of the REACH registration to establish compliance of its expandable graphite materials.
“Over the past 12 months, the company has experienced increased demand for its expandable graphite products as multiple consumers target diversification of source for these niche materials,” the company said, noting that 90% of expandable graphite is currently manufactured in China.
“With increasing environmental concerns and manufacturing costs of Chinese products, many consumers have approached the company for its CarboflameX grades from across the globe. REACH Certification will help to expedite discussions with these and other new consumers across the Company's range of expandable graphite products,” it added.
Shares in the company jumped 8% to 85p on Wednesday morning, adding to gains made since December’s flotation on London’s main market at 45p.