The Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies (RUSNANO) agreed to invest ca. $8 million (234 million Rubles) into a new nanotechnology venture with Microbor Technology. The new company will launch commercial production of cutting tools using the cubic boron nitride nanopowder (CBN) developed by Microbor. RUSNANO will also provide a $15 million (461 million Rubles) loan to the new venture over the next three years.
The total value of the new venture is $31 million (930 million Rubles), of which Microbor will contribute its existing business valued at ca. $6.7 million (200 million Rubles) and $1.3 million (35 million Rubles) in cash. Based on their contribution, it could be implied that the shareholders of Microbor will have a 50.1 percent stake in the new venture while RUSNANO will own a 49.9 percent stake.
Founded in 2002, Microbor makes CBN-based tools for rough and final cutting in heavy engineering, automotive, mining and construction industries. Cubic Boron Nitride (CBN) is the second hardest material after the diamond. CBN is produced by high pressure and high temperature synthesis.
Among global vendors of CBN cutting tools, only Sandvik manufactures its own tools using micron-sized CBN particles. Microbor will set up a commercial production of CBN tools using nano-sized CBN particles. Their advanced properties such as hardness, wear and heat resistance result in much better performance and reduce cost of using them by up to 60 percent. Microbor expects its first nanopowder CBN cutting tools to be commercially produced in Q3 2010.