Veolia seeks to expand decommissioning offer with Kurion acquisition

Veolia is to acquire Kurion and develop an integrated offer in nuclear facility clean-up and treatment of low and medium-level radioactive waste. Kurion, the California-based start-up which among other projects was responsible for stabilising Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in the wake of the 2011 tsunami has been bought for $350 million (cash free). The acquisition completes a critical part of Veolia’s strategy in the nuclear clean-up sector. The company first outlined its intent in this area in 2013 when the company signed a collaboration agreement with the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) and formed Asteralis. It hopes that with the addition of Kurion’s expertise and technology, is will be able to complete its portfolio of services to the nuclear industry and will now be able to provide all existing solutions and know-how in both nuclear facility clean-up and the treatment of low and medium-level radioactive waste.

Veolia is perhaps better known as a specialist in water and waste treatment, and soil remediation and the management of sensitive sites. Its Asteralis subsidiary specializes in characterizing waste and assessing nuclear facilities. The combination of these technologies and know-how with that of Kurion in radioactive waste separation, vitrification and robotics for access to sensitive areas, will enable Veolia to develop a world-class industrial offer for nuclear facility clean-up and the treatment of low and medium-level radioactive waste.

Kurion was founded in 2008 and is based in Irvine, California. It offers solutions in nuclear waste clean-up and facility decommissioning, as well as treatment of low-level radioactive waste. Its activities fall into three areas of expertise: separation, stabilisation, and robotics for access to restricted areas. It has operations in the United States, the United Kingdom and Japan.

Antoine Frérot, Chairman and Chief Executive of Veolia, said: “Bringing Kurion and its employees into Veolia is going to enable us to develop a world-class integrated offer in nuclear facility clean-up and treatment of low level radioactive waste around the world.”

“With Veolia, Kurion has found the perfect partner to accelerate our growth trajectory while expanding our markets and commercial offerings. The combination of the two companies establishes a major force in the Nuclear Restoration market”, said William Gallo, Kurion Chief Executive.

This acquisition is subject to approval by US authorities, in particular US competition authorities.