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Suburban Propane and Iwatani Corporation of America Collaborate to Advance Commercial Development Opportunities in Propane and Hydrogen Markets

WHIPPANY, N.J., May 23, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Suburban Propane Partners, L.P. (NYSE: SPH), a nationwide distributor of propane, renewable energy and related products and services, as well as a marketer of natural gas and electricity and investor in low-carbon fuel alternatives (Suburban Propane), and Iwatani Corporation of America (Iwatani), a wholly-owned subsidiary company of Iwatani Corporation (TYO: 8088), today announced an agreement to collaborate in advancing the adoption of low-carbon alternative energy solutions across multiple applications in the propane market; including propane blended with renewable dimethyl ether (Propane+rDME). The parties have also agreed to collaborate on opportunities to advance investments in hydrogen infrastructure and transportation services in the United States.

Leveraging Iwatani's research and development laboratory in Japan, as well as each company's respective relationships with original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and suppliers, Suburban Propane and Iwatani will work together to test and evaluate material compatibility, equipment performance and emissions profiles of residential and commercial appliances, forklifts and on-road vehicles at varying blend levels of Propane+rDME.  This exciting new product combines clean, versatile and abundantly available propane with the renewable, low-carbon benefits of rDME, produced by Oberon Fuels, Inc., to help create a pathway for lowering emissions to meet aggressive carbon reduction standards.  Engaging with OEMs, the parties will also collaborate to accelerate the adoption of Propane+rDME both in the United States and Japan.  

In addition to their work on accelerating the market penetration of Propane+rDME, Suburban Propane and Iwatani will also explore investment and development opportunities to expand the distribution network for hydrogen in the United States. Iwatani's parent company is Japan's only fully integrated supplier of hydrogen with the largest share of hydrogen production, distribution and hydrogen refueling stations in Japan. Leveraging its parent company's expertise, Iwatani has embarked on an ambitious growth program to establish a vertically integrated hydrogen business in the United States.

"We are extremely proud to partner with Iwatani to advance our mutual interests in providing solutions to help decarbonize many sectors of the economy.  The collaboration of Iwatani's market leadership in both the propane and hydrogen markets in Japan, partnered with our leadership in the U. S. propane industry and our collective commitment to innovation, we are excited to help accelerate the transition to cleaner energy alternatives," said Michael Stivala, President and CEO of Suburban Propane.  "With our initial launch of Propane+rDME in the Southern California market in April 2022, we are leading the way to decarbonizing the propane industry, and this collaboration will help drive even more aggressive carbon reduction in multiple applications. In recognition of the growing role that hydrogen will play in a sustainable energy future, we continue to identify opportunities to diversify our business and leverage our significant energy experience to support hydrogen investments in the United States."

"As Japan's leading provider of LPG and hydrogen, we intend to continue to demonstrate our company's commitment to decarbonization and providing an array of solutions that accelerate the transition to zero emission sources of energy across the markets in which we operate," commented Joseph S. Cappello, Chairman and CEO of Iwatani Corporation of America.  "Having the opportunity to collaborate with Suburban Propane to advance these objectives in both Japan and the United States is a genuine honor."

In March 2022, Suburban Propane announced its purchase of a 25% equity stake in Independence Hydrogen, Inc., a veteran-owned and operated developer of a hydrogen ecosystem from production to distribution that will deliver locally-sourced hydrogen to local markets in the United States. At that time, Suburban Propane also announced the creation of a new subsidiary, Suburban Renewables, as part of its long-term strategic goal of building out a renewable energy platform, and fostering innovative solutions to support the economy-wide transition to a sustainable energy future.

About Iwatani: 

Iwatani Corporation (TYO: 8088) is Japan's leading provider of LPG and hydrogen and is committed to reducing the carbon intensity of these very important sources of energy. Iwatani has also adopted the "Iwatani Gate Way" plan, which will provide customers with next-generation services utilizing AI and IoT technologies throughout its customer network and is now in the demonstration phase and moving toward realization.

Since 1941, Iwatani has regarded hydrogen as the ultimate clean energy source and has consistently engaged in initiatives to encourage its widespread use. Under the corporate slogan "A world where all enjoy true comfort – this is Iwatani's desire," Iwatani strives to solve environmental concerns with the aim of achieving a carbon-free society through the use of hydrogen. Iwatani is Japan's only fully integrated supplier of hydrogen and presently supplies its extensive base of light and heavy-duty hydrogen refueling stations and industrial customers via three liquid and eight gaseous hydrogen production plants throughout the country. Leveraging its parent company's expertise, Iwatani Corporation of America (ICA) has embarked on an ambitious growth program to establish a vertically integrated hydrogen business in the US, which includes hydrogen supply, distribution and logistics services, as well as operations & maintenance services to hydrogen refueling station owners. ICA also owns and operates a rapidly growing network of Iwatani-branded hydrogen refueling stations in California. Iwatani Corporation of America has headquarters offices in Houston, Texas and Santa Clara, California.

About Suburban Propane:

Suburban Propane Partners, L.P. (NYSE:SPH), a nationwide distributor of propane, renewable propane, fuel oil and related products and services, as well as a marketer of natural gas and electricity and investor in low-carbon fuel alternatives, servicing over 1 million customers through its 700 locations across 42 states. The company proudly celebrated 90 years of innovation, growth and quality service in 2018. The brand is currently focused on three core elements; including Suburban Commitment - showcasing the company's 90+ year legacy of flexibility, reliability and dependability, SuburbanCares - highlighting dedication to serving local communities across the nation and Go Green with Suburban Propane - promoting the affordable, clean and versatile nature of propane as a solution for a green energy future. Suburban Propane is a New York Stock Exchange listed limited partnership headquartered in Whippany, NJ. For additional information on Suburban Propane, please visit http://www.suburbanpropane.com/.  

SOURCE Suburban Propane Partners, L.P.

For further information: Ms. Sarah Stewart, Regan Communications, 617-763-6728, scox@regancomm.com; Ms. Nandini Sankara, Spokesperson, Suburban Propane, 973-503-9082, pr@suburbanpropane.com