Syntroleum Founder Resigns Amid Company Shake-Up

Tuesday, November 20th 2007, 1:37 pm
By: News On 6

Tulsa-based Syntroleum is entering a bold new phase of the company's existence. The founder, chairman and chief research officer is resigning as part of a series of job cuts and management changes designed to improve the company's performance. News On 6 business reporter Steve Berg reports for 23 years, Syntroleum has been developing ways of turning natural gas, coal and most recently animal fats into a super-clean diesel fuel, now they're ready to sell it.

Under a restructuring effort, Syntroleum founder Kenneth Agee resigned his position on Monday. Agee says he will continue to focus on research and development, and he is still the largest shareholder of Syntroleum. As part of the reorganization, Syntroleum will also reduce its workforce from 38 to 22 and sell off its lab facilities. Agee is in negotiations to buy those lab facilities.

The plan is a shift from research and development for Syntroleum and will move the company into its commercial phase. Profit wasn't realistic during the research and development phase when they perfected three different ways of creating clean synthetic diesel. First was natural gas, then coal, but the most recent, and most feasible right now, is animal fats, which Syntroleum is teaming up with Tyson foods to get.

While natural gas and coal take extensive and expensive processing to get the long-chain hydrocarbons that are needed to create diesel fuel, animal fats reach the long-chain hydrocarbon stage, most naturally on their own, and that means it’s cheaper to create.

Tyson and Syntroleum plan to build their first synthetic fuel facility in Louisiana in 2010.

Watch the video: Changes In Leadership At Syntroleum

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