Bain Capital is nearing a deal to acquire a minority stake in EcoCeres Inc., a biomass company majority owned by Hong Kong & China Gas Co., as the private equity firm seeks to boost its sustainable investing strategy, according to people familiar with the matter.

The companies are hammering out the details of a deal that could be worth a few hundred million dollars, the people said. A potential transaction could be announced as early as Thursday, the people said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private.

An investment from Bain would help turbocharge growth at EcoCeres, the people said. For Bain, the deal fits into its environmental, social and governance investment strategy, they added.

While discussions are at an advanced stage, they could still be delayed or fall apart, the people said. A representative for Bain declined to comment, while representatives for EcoCeres and Towngas, as the Hong Kong utility giant is known, didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

Towngas in 2021 set up EcoCeres, which focuses on developing technology that converts waste-based biomass into a wide range of biofuels, biochemicals and biomaterials, according to its website. Its main business includes a hydro-treated vegetable oil plant for converting inedible bio-grease feedstock into advanced biofuels in China’s Jiangsu province. Last year, private equity firm Kerogen Capital invested $108 million in EcoCeres and became a minority investor.

Founded in 1862, Towngas was the first public utility in the former British colony and now supplies gas to about 1.9 million accounts covering residential, commercial and industrial sectors, according to its website. The company expanded its business to mainland China in 1994. It now operates more than 550 projects across the country.

Bain, based in Boston, counts about $160 billion in assets under management in areas including private and public equity, fixed income, credit, venture capital and real estate, its website shows.