A Vietnamese company boasts No. 1 Tungsten recycling technology

N.P.M 10:35, 10/05/2023

Owning a world-class tungsten recycling technology platform in Germany, Masan High-Tech Materials (MHT) sees recycling as one of the key strategic pillars for the company's success in terms of revenue growth and reaffirming its leading position in the global high-tech industry.


Scrap recycling expansion

At the Annual General Meeting of Shareholders 2023 (AGM) held on April 18, Mr. Craig Bradshaw, MHT Chief Executive Officer said that the increase in recycling rate of Tungsten helped Masan High-Tech Materials deliver a record revenue of VND 15,550 billion in 2022, an increase of 15% compared to FY2021.

In 2022, Tungsten production from recycling activities of H.C. Starck (a subsidiary of Masan High-Tech Materials) increased by 13% by increasing the share of production coming from secondary supply (scrap recycling), in line with the strategy of the Company’s “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” strategy. In addition to meeting 9% of the global demand for Tungsten products, Masan High-Tech Materials is also the largest recycler of Tungsten scraps in Europe, accounting for 14% of the global recycle back into new tungsten containing products and materials.

Recently, Masan High-Tech Materials launched two trademarked brands for new tungsten powders, namely ‘starck2charge®’ - used for manufacturing safe and fast-charging Li-ion battery, expected to play a significant contribution to the manufacturing of electric vehicles (EV) globally, and ‘starck2print®’ - special tungsten powders and complementary innovation services for 3D printing, especially in the medical and pharmaceutical industries.                                                                         

According to Mr. Craig Bradshaw, beyond these products, in Germany, Masan High-Tech Materials is focusing on increasing capacity of black mass recycling. Black mass is specifically the residue that remains after removing the physical components from a battery. And after use, the used batteries can be removed from your smartphones, PCs, iPads, electric vehicles, etc. According to the International Tungsten Industry Association (ITIA), cemented carbide scraps can be recycled up to 80%, although spent catalysts containing tungsten are frequently dumped in hazardous waste disposal sites.

Through research projects and simulation tests, Masan High-Tech Materials has developed and perfected the recycling process, allowing full recovery of lithium, nickel, copper, cobalt, and manganese from waste battery products; and developing specific refinery formulas to achieve higher tungsten recovery efficiency.  These technology achievements help Masan High-Tech Materials reduce reliance on mining the natural resources and promote a circular business model through urban mining, collection and treatment of industrial waste and scrap recycling, thus converting end of life assets back into new materials to make new products. This explains why Masan High-Tech Materials has boldly committed to developing a fully-integrated circular economy model with a complete value chain with its shareholders in AGM 2023.  The Company has set a target net revenue of VND16,500-18,200 billion, up 6% to 17% from the previous year.

Turning Vietnam into the leading Tungsten recycling hub in the region

One of the messages repeatedly highlighted by Masan High-Tech Materials management at the AGM this year is the drive to create a revolution in renewable energy through new and innovative materials, as well as maintaining green growth, environmental protection and sustainable development. Especially, Masan High-Tech Materials has steadfastly delivered on its goal of becoming the world’s leading trusted supplier of high-tech and sustainable materials.

H.C. Starck

Masan High-Tech Materials' goods are now available on the global market. Specifically, 45% of MHT's materials are marketed in Europe, 22% in NAFTA, 18% in China, produced in China for the Chinese market, and 15% in the rest of the globe. Masan High-Tech Materials has a wide network of customers with over 300 customers in 30 different countries. From a supply-side perspective, major industrial economies, including the US, EU, and Japan, have all categorized tungsten, fluorspar, and bismuth as both critical and strategic materials.

Furthermore, according to Mr. Craig Bradshaw, in addition to H.C. Starck in Germany, Masan High-Tech Materials is building the first and largest tungsten recycling plant project in Asia, which is located in Thai Nguyen, in order to increase the supply source of high-tech materials from recycling and satisfy the rising demand of the global market.  Masan High-Tech Materials is conducting a feasibility study to develop a front-end processing at our Tungsten processing plant, which enables the Company to calcinate and roast scraps in Vietnam as opposed to calcinating them elsewhere and transporting them to Vietnam. “We aspire to put Vietnam at the forefront of recycling by establishing a recycling hub in the Asia Pacific region. This will help us diversify our business and improve our scrap processing capacity, as part of our transition towards “urban mining”, said Mr. Craig Bradshaw.

Sharing about the future strategic vision, Mr. Danny Le - Chairman of the Board of Directors of Masan High-Tech Materials said: “In the near future, Masan High-Tech Materials will be not only the world's leading supplier of high-tech materials but also directly participate in and drive the global market for technology consumer products. Having a comprehensive and world-class Tungsten recycling platform, we are optimistic in our ability to develop new environment-friendly material sources. This is the strategic pillar for Masan High-Tech Materials’ current and future success”.