Headquarters: Ames, Iowa
Website: www.regi.com
Ticker symbol: NASDAQ: REGI 
Employees: 850

Board of Directors List
Jeffrey Stroburg, Chairman of the Board
Daniel J. Oh, President and CEO
Delbert Christensen, Director
Peter J. M. Harding, Director
Randolph L. Howard, Director
Michael A. Jackson, Director
Mike Scharf, Chairman REG Audit Committee
Christopher D. Sorrells, Director
John Gerken, Attorney


Renewable Energy Group Inc. continues to grow, and it recovered sharply from the early 2016 market dip, especially when it became clear the federal government would continue to increase the mandated levels of biofuels in the national fuel supplies. The company is looking to expand its biofuels holdings while also looking to refine glycerin for use in fragrances and other products.

 

Daniel Oh | CEO

Age: 51
Education: Bachelor’s in economics, U.S. Military Academy, West Point; MBA, University of Chicago
Hometown: Bloomington, Ind.
Family: Wife, Lori; four children

 

Renewable Energy Group President and CEO Daniel Oh expects the company to continue to grow as it expands markets for advanced biofuels and looks to producing valuable chemicals for other industries.

“Over the next several years, we will be focusing on trying to deliver great value for our customers and the environment and our shareholders,” Oh said. “For these products, we are particularly focused on lower carbon intensity products and services. We are producing and seeking to produce products that have the same or better quality as conventional products today with the same or better environmental footprint and enable our customers and value chains to do more.”

The company still focuses most intently on biofuels, making diesel out of used cooking oil. “REG is right in the forefront of advanced biofuels,” Oh said. He and others in the industry contend that the use and production of biofuels emit less carbon, meaning they are better for fighting climate change. 

REG’s annual revenues have grown from $58 million in 2006 to $2 billion as the company has established operations in North America and western Europe.

“From Iowa, with the technologies and capabilities we have in the state, we are able to project globally, even from Ames,” Oh said. “We have built the company over the past 10 years, and we’ve been able to leverage best-in-class technology, whether it be communications or (enterprise resource planning) systems or manufacturing statistical analysis. 

“We intend to continue to lead the business from Iowa while also having a regional hub in Europe, and we are already doing business in Asia and Central and South America,” mostly buying raw materials and advanced biofuels to ship to the United States, Oh added.

“So we will stay focused on what we do, which is lower carbon intensity products and services, and we will continue to deliver these benefits that really started in Iowa.”

REG operations now include 12 biorefineries around the country, with 10 making biomass-based biodiesel (using cooking oil primarily), one making renewable hydrocarbon diesel, and a Florida plant that makes renewable chemicals through fermentation. REG has a biotechnology laboratory in south San Francisco, along with two plants it bought in Germany and an office in Amsterdam. Sales have expanded to 48 states and five Canadian provinces.

Oh said REG is working on using glycerin as a soil amendment stimulant that will help grow tomatoes and strawberries. It is a biostimulant soil amendment. “It is used — and we are in field trials now and expect to be in full commercial sales in the second half of ’17 — to grow things like strawberries and tomatoes” in California, Florida and overseas. The product improves yields and is gentle on the environment, Oh added.

“We’re taking glycerin — which we are the largest producer of in the country — that is made from the biodiesel production. We make about a pound of glycerine from every gallon of biodiesel that we make. We mix that with a few special components that create the soil amendment. We’ve done field trials for a couple years.

“We also just launched a specialty fatty acid for the fragrance industry,” Oh said. “We are developing technologies that take sugars and glycerin and make more valuable products. Here in the Midwest we have really abundant corn sugar, which is becoming more affordable and competitive over time.”

Oh said REG will remain a biodiesel-first company, even with the move toward adding new products. 

“We are leading and growing with biomass-based advanced biofuels, in particular biomass-based biodiesel,” he said. “That is our lead effort, it’s going to be or lead effort and how we lead internationally and in the U.S. Wherever we are able to, we are supplementing our logistics and our supply chain and our customers with additional products like these renewable chemicals.”

Oh said he expects renewable fuels to continue to attract support from the federal government in a Trump administration in which the president-elect has said he supports, but a couple of his key appointees don’t.

“Mr. Trump has been very careful to say that he is going to continue to support (the federal renewable fuel standard) as he should,” Oh said. “When you think of Mr. Trump and the base that got him elected, rural America is a huge part of that. So we’re at REG very careful not to get involved in one side or another because what we do is such a bipartisan supported effort. It’s easy for us to find allies.”

Oh said the market for corn-based ethanol should remain strong, as will sales of biodiesel like that produced by REG. “We produce really clean energy, and the carbon footprint from our fuel is 75 to 85 percent better than a petroleum diesel gallon,” Oh said. 

“What that is saying for the same amount of pollution, you could use four or five of our gallons to one gallon of (petroleum) diesel,” he added.

“We will continue to expand where it is profitable around the world,” Oh said. “North America and Europe are the two best markets, and we expect them to stay that way. North America especially is in a leadership role right now. We will continue to move on our advantage in those areas.”

Oh expects REG employment to increase. “We were about 30 employees in 2006. And counting our colleagues in Germany, we are about 850 today.”

The Ames campus, now at 72,000 square feet, is likely to grow over time, he added.


Financial Report
Revenues | Net Income

2011: $824M | $43M
2012: $1B | $49M
2013: $1.5B | $167M
2014: $1.3B | $84M
2015: $1.4B | (-$151M)
2016: $1.5B | $24M