Imerys: an experienced, responsible company
A world leader in specialty minerals for industry, Imerys is a French company that transforms minerals into high-value-added specialties for its customers in many sectors (electric vehicles, construction, health and beauty, packaging, food, etc.).
With its unique expertise, the company has more than 200 industrial locations in 40 countries. In France, Imerys operates at more than 30 sites, two-thirds of which are backed by quarries.
Historic mining experience
The Imerys company has its origins in the mining and metallurgical trades. Until 1999, it consolidated the activities of two mining companies: the Peñarroya Mining and Metallurgical Company (specializing in lead, zinc, germanium and indium) and Société le Nickel (operating in New Caledonia).
Through this history, Imerys has amassed geological and mining expertise. The company’s scarce resources require high-level geological expertise to identify, secure and reclaim in a safe, sustainable, economically viable manner over time.
In this context, Imerys is active in several organizations to help develop a more sustainable, responsible, innovative sector. Thus, at the national level, the company is a member of Minéraux Industriels de France, an organization founded in 1995 to promote sharing of knowledge and expertise within its network.
Imerys is also a partner of the Mineral and Territories Industry Chair, which brings together the best French academic expertise in the mineral industry to assist citizens, public authorities, research and training centers and companies as they consider choices related to mineral resource exploitation projects.
At European level, Imerys, is a member of ESMA, an association promoting cooperation among its members on scientific and legislative issues. Through ESMA, the company is integrated into Industrial Minerals Europe, a network that aims to develop a thriving industry in the heart of a sustainable Europe.
Innovation to meet industrial challenges
With nearly 2,500 patents and 4,000 registered trademarks, innovation is at the heart of Imerys’ priorities.
The company has always relied on leading experts it recruits and on partnerships with startups, universities and industrial companies to unleash the potential of mineral and materials science.
Innovation is key for Imerys to address the major technological challenges facing all industrial operators. Imerys draws on its expertise to meet the future needs of the company through advanced materials technologies, more sustainable minerals, smarter operating methods, and a constant search for ways to contribute to circular and more sustainable economies.
As the EMILI project illustrates, mineral use is constantly evolving, and Imerys has a key role to play in addressing some of the major environmental and social challenges facing the world. In France, this project would enable Imerys to participate in the search for ever more innovative solutions for the energy transition.
Systematic consideration of environmental issues
As a responsible industrial company, Imerys systematically evaluates each new project against environmental and social criteria in order to meet CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) objectives. The EMILI project is thus the subject of careful impact studies for developing a project that respects the territory and the environment and is designed according to the IRMA international mining benchmark.
Imerys is committed to continuously improving sustainability and accountability for all its projects, in order to be a proactive force in sustainable development.
The company has set itself ambitious CSR targets, which are assessed by internationally recognized external rating agencies. In its environmental charter, Imerys is committed to conserving biodiversity throughout its sites, from the project phase to the rehabilitation of quarries when they are decommissioned.
Imerys is committed to act4nature international, a voluntary commitment initiative for biodiversity.
Imerys’ commitment is also reflected in its SustainAgility™ Solutions Assessment. This allows the concept of sustainable development to be integrated into all aspects of the company, from day-to-day decisions to long-term strategy.
Unique human wealth
With 30 employees at the Beauvoir site, Imerys’ teams are actively and sustainably established and connected to the local economic and industrial fabric.
The company also has 18,000 employees worldwide, including geologists, mining engineers, Hygiene, Safety and Environment (HSE) specialists, experts in mineral processing and industrial project development, on whom it can rely to develop this project, from R&D to industrialization.
By way of example, the concentration process is one that Imerys masters particularly well, since it relies on technologies used elsewhere on its sites. Some parts of the EMILI project are currently being strengthened, particularly the conversion process.
Over the long term, more than 1,000 direct and indirect jobs would be created, as well as a European center for excellence in the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region.