Econic Technologies raises funds for commercialisation with incoming investor Capricorn, and OGCI Climate Investments

Carbon-to-Value company Econic Technologies has successfully closed the first round of its latest fund raise to support commercialisation of their CO2 utilisation technology.


27 April 2022 – Econic Technologies, deep-tech carbon-to-value pioneer, today announced that it has closed the first round of a multimillion capital raise. The investment will accelerate the company’s route to commercialisation as it responds to increasing customer demand for sustainable ways of using carbon dioxide (CO2) to replace oil derived components in household and industrial products.

The round was led by incoming investor, Capricorn Sustainable Chemistry Fund, with follow-on support from existing investor OGCI Climate Investments. They are backing the scale up of Econic’s catalyst and process technology that transforms waste CO2 into a valuable raw material for use in essential every-day products, reducing their carbon footprints by up to 30%.

The company will first incorporate CO2 into polyols – used in polyurethane products for mattresses, insulation, textiles, light-weighting vehicles, amongst many other applications including coatings and adhesives. In addition, Econic is developing CO2 based surfactant ingredients for use in cleaning, home and personal care, and industrial products. These applications currently use millions of tonnes of oil-based raw materials every year. Econic’s technology uses CO2 that would otherwise be emitted to the atmosphere or stored for generations to replace up to 50% of the oil-based component.

Both Capricorn Partners and OGCI have leading, dedicated funds that align very closely with Econic’s ambitions to help drive the world to net zero.

Keith Wiggins, CEO of Econic Technologies, commented: ‘We’re delighted to welcome Capricorn Partners, one of the leading investors in sustainable chemistry-based solutions. Their expertise, in collaboration with ongoing support from OGCI, will allow Econic to respond to growing customer demand for our technology and to create value from using captured CO2 in everyday products.’

Yvette Go, Investment Director at Capricorn Sustainable Chemistry Fund, commented: ‘Econic offer a fantastic and innovative chemical technology for the sustainable manufacture of polymers with reduced environmental impact. We’re so pleased to be coming on board to work with the team as they bring their product to market’.

Matthew Harwood, CSO at OGCI Climate Investments, commented: ‘We are very excited about the commercial interest we are seeing globally in Econic as consumer-facing companies seek to reduce the carbon footprint of their products. We’re looking forward to continuing to support them during this pivotal point in their commercial progress.’


Please get in touch for more information, or to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Anthea Blackburn

Econic Technologies appoints a new CEO as it enters its next phase

Catalyst technology company, Econic Technologies, has appointed Keith Wiggins as its new CEO to lead the next stage scale up and commercialisation of the business.


The leader in CO2 utilisation technology, Econic Technologies, has today announced the appointment of Keith Wiggins as its new CEO. Wiggins will take over from Dr Rowena Sellens who will retire after eight years of leadership, having taken the company to its market-leading position from a spin-out start up. The firm is now ready to scale the commercialisation of its unique catalyst technology amongst customers looking to achieve net zero carbon and core sustainability objectives.

The key next stages in this process are to progress key partnerships alongside a forthcoming fund raise on the back of recently secured investment from existing shareholders and the UK government’s Future Fund.

Wiggins brings broad experience of successfully running advanced manufacturing businesses and commercialising technologies across global markets. His international career spans senior leadership positions with leading multinationals and early stage companies.

Keith Wiggins, CEO of Econic Technologies, commented: ‘It is an honour to be joining Econic Technologies at a time when the business is poised to scale and commercialize. Rowena and the team have developed a world class technology that brings environmental, cost and performance benefits to customers, at a time when the world is demanding sustainable solutions for CO2. I look forward to being part of the growth story ahead.’

Wiggins replaces the retiring Dr Rowena Sellens, who was appointed in 2014 and oversaw Econic Technologies’ initial funding rounds; the launch of a UK-first customer demonstration facility; and the conclusion of the firm’s first joint development agreements, including a partnership with Drax. Dr Sellens will use her retirement to explore a number of non-executive roles.

Dr Rowena Sellens, former CEO, commented: ‘Overseeing the growth of Econic Technologies has been a real labour of love. Thanks to the incredible hard work of a team that I was so proud to lead, the business has gone from strength to strength. I am very happy to be passing the reins to Keith, who brings fresh perspectives and deep experience that will help the catalyst complete the final stages of commercialisation. I wish him well, and look forward to watching the firm’s continued growth.’


For more information contact:

Mr Leigh S Taylor, Head of Sales & Licensing
+44 (0)1625 238 645 | l.taylor@econic-technologies.com


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Econic

CO2nversations – Noushin Zaynalzadeh

The transfer of Econic’s technology, from laboratory, to pilot plant and then to a large-scale industrial production plant, is a process fundamental to the commercialisation of Econic’s world leading sustainable catalyst technologies.  Noushin Zaynalzadeh, one of our Process Engineers, is key in leading and managing the steps required to take our process off the drawing board and from the bench, and into reality.

Ensuring that the fundamentals of our process are captured in such a way that end users or engineering partners can translate them into pipework and steel is a key responsibility for Noushin.  The process must not only be captured accurately and efficiently, but most importantly safely.

“Working across many functions and teams within Econic, from research, process development and on to our Customer Demonstration Facility involves understanding a huge array of scientific and engineering concepts, which can certainly be challenging, but is also very rewarding. Add into that mix liaising with our external engineering partners to bring all of these pieces of information together into a cohesive framework – it certainly keeps me on my toes!”

As we move closer to the commercialisation of our catalyst technologies, Noushin’s contribution to such developments form a cornerstone of our ability to deliver the Econic technology to the market, helping our customers to realise the full potential of incorporating waste CO2 into their polyol and downstream plastics applications.


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Econic

Econic Technologies secures £3.2m funding

9th November 2020

Climate impact catalyst technology company, Econic Technologies, announces that it has raised £3.2 million pounds funding via a convertible loan. The loan includes a £1.6 million investment from the UK government’s Future Fund, which was established to support innovative businesses through the COVID-19 outbreak, matched by funds from existing investors OGCI Climate Investments and IP Group plc.

The funding will be used to drive forward the commercialisation of Econic’s pioneering catalyst technologies, which enable manufacturers to harness the value of waste CO2 recycling it directly into existing processes to displace traditional oil-based chemicals. The unique technology is energy efficient and reduces cost at the same time as delivering clear climate change impact by both using captured CO2 and reducing future emissions through decreasing use of fossil-based chemicals. The technology has moved from laboratory to industrial pilot scale in the past two years with extensive process and product validation. Econic is now moving to deploy the technology at commercial scale in the first target market, polyols for polyurethane, in collaboration with material producers and downstream users looking to harness the product benefits and positive climate impact. At the same time, the Econic technology platform aligns directly with other key application markets such as surfactants where the drive for more sustainable products is creating new opportunities and partnerships.

Rowena Sellens, CEO of Econic Technologies, commented:

 “This additional support will help Econic accelerate customer adoption of what is an economically attractive route to more sustainable products, reducing the climate impact of materials that we all use in our everyday lives. We will be working closely with existing and new commercial partners to make that happen.”

Just Jansz, Chairman of Econic Technologies, added:

“I would like to thank Econic’s shareholders for their continued support, as well as the Future Fund, in these extraordinary times. Impressive progress in the past year has positioned the Company well for a number of exciting partnership discussions aimed at progressing commercialisation in polyols for polyurethanes and accelerating deployment of the technology into other markets such as surfactants.”


About the Future Fund

The Future Fund will support the UK’s innovative businesses currently affected by Covid-19. These businesses have been unable to access other government business support programmes, such as CBILS, because they are either pre-revenue or pre-profit and typically rely on equity investment. Initially, £250 million was made available by the government for investment through the scheme, to be matched by private investors, with the Treasury making clear the amount could be increased if needed. Due to the popularity of the Fund, more funding is being made available. Developed by the government and delivered by the British Business Bank, the Future Fund launched for applications in May and will initially be open until the end of November.


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Anthea Blackburn

Econic Technologies awarded Innovate UK grant

Econic Technologies awarded Innovate UK grant to support further development of its’ pioneering technology to help fight climate change.

Econic Technologies has been awarded an Innovate UK grant under the Sustainable Innovation Fund framework to support further development of its’ pioneering technology to help fight climate change by facilitating the use of waste CO2 as a raw material, replacing expensive oil-based feedstocks, in polymer manufacture.  The grant, which supports a nine-month programme of innovation, was secured by the Econic team to allow greater resource focus on the process of recycling Econic’s innovative catalyst and will contribute to Econic’s R&D expenditure.

Dave Walker, Head of Process Development, Econic Technologies, commented:

“This is fantastic news for Econic.  This grant will allow us to support and accelerate our development, bringing enhanced performance to our already world leading technology package”.  


For more information contact:

Mr Leigh S Taylor, Head of Sales & Licensing at Econic Technologies
+44 (0)1625 238 645 | l.taylor@econic-technologies.com


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Econic

CO2nversations – Michael Kember

As Econic grows significantly and moves towards commercialisation, so too do our scientific innovations. These technological developments form part of the foundation, and the future, of our company, so it’s important that we protect them, in the same way that you would your house or car. This is where Dr Michael Kember, our Head of Research and Intellectual Property, and also a co-founder of Econic, steps in.

Mike determines the direction that our research team take in the development of new generations of catalysts and CO2-containing polymeric products, not only in terms of the fundamental scientific developments, but also in their protection as Econic’s intellectual property. This task requires Mike and the team to have a forensic understanding of the current IP landscape to see where and how Econic fits in, and the directions  future technology innovations can take. “It is important that we protect our catalyst technologies at all stages of development.” Mike states, “This protection is crucial in establishing the place of our unique catalyst systems’ foothold in the market. It also allows our customers the freedom to use these technologies in their own business processes, opening up the advantages of CO2-based polyols and materials.”

Econic’s IP portfolio is an ever-evolving, growing collection, currently consisting of more than 30 granted patents that span from polymerisation catalysts and the processes used in our technology, to enhanced polyurethane products made using CO2-containing polyols. This portfolio will only continue to diversify as we develop new generations of our catalyst technologies for use in the polyols for the polyurethane market, and, looking ahead, to wider plastics markets. The potential is far-reaching and we are only just scratching the surface.


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Anthea Blackburn

CO2nversations – Solène Cauët-Fidge

Safety is one of the founding values that underpins how Econic operates not only on a day-to-day basis in our laboratories and Customer Demonstration Facility, but also as we plan for the commercialisation of our catalyst technologies and further growth of the company. Dr Solène Cauët-Fidge, our Safety and Laboratory Manager, is leading the charge in implementing our Health and Safety policies throughout our very diverse activities across two sites.

Guaranteeing safety compliance in a growing company, whilst also ensuring that research can run with minimal disruptions, can be a challenge for Health and Safety. “Working with the research team who carry out a breadth of activities, as well as ever-developing processes and working conditions, keeps me on my toes” says Solène. “But, it’s the dynamic nature of Econic that makes it so exciting! My days can involve anything from managing the use of new chemicals on a laboratory scale, to developing the company’s H&S policy, to considering the safety implications of scaling a process to the demonstration scale or beyond.”

As we move closer to the commercialisation of our catalyst technologies, it is vital that we maintain the highest levels of safety practices as we not only develop and transfer internally our processes from the lab to plant scale, but also as we move to test these systems in our customers’ facilities. Safety processes are an integral element of helping our customers to realise the full potential of incorporating waste CO2 into their polyol and downstream plastics applications.


Get in touch to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Anthea Blackburn

Happy birthday to the UK’s first customer demonstration facility!

It has been a year since we opened the doors to our customer demonstration facility in Runcorn – the very first of its kind in the UK – to demonstrate how our pioneering catalyst technology can create polyols using waste CO2. It would be safe to say that, in this time, a fantastic buzz has sprung up around the plant, not just from our fellow members of The Heath, but from across the plastics industry.

So far, we’ve had visits from 60 leading global companies within the polyurethane industry, as well as Andy Burnham and Steve Rotherham, the Metro Mayors of Manchester and Liverpool. The team of 7 at the facility has been busy producing polyol samples for all of the interested parties, who are testing the added value that our technology will incorporate into their own downstream polyurethane applications – everything from CO2-based insulation foams, to coatings and elastomers.

Over the course of the year, activity at the plant has helped our pioneering catalyst technology move out of the lab and onto the factory floor, demonstrating the huge economic and positive potential of CO2 for manufacturers.

Importantly for polyurethane producers, our facility uses a conventional reactor design and widely-available downstream technology, which shows just how readily existing plants can be retrofitted to use our catalyst. But unlike existing plants, our facility enables manufacturers to create CO2-containing polyols at lower pressures and temperatures, which not only allows for much safer operation, but also leads to significant cost savings. Producing everyday goods from CO2 may have once sounded like science fiction, but our facility has demonstrated that it is now science fact.

In the coming months, the facility will continue to fire on all cylinders. We look forward to welcoming more customers to the facility to further demonstrate the economic, environmental and product potential of our catalyst technology and how easily the use of waste CO2 as a raw material can be adopted, and its advantages realised by the polyurethane industry.

Happy birthday, customer demonstration facility! Here’s to another fantastic year ahead.


Get in touch to learn more about our Customer Demonstration Facility and to find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business.

Author, Anthea Blackburn

Econic named 2019 Global Cleantech 100 company

Econic Technologies, a British cleantech pioneer helping turn waste carbon dioxide into an asset for the plastics industry, was named in the prestigious 2019 Global Cleantech 100. The Global Cleantech 100 is an annual guide published by Cleantech Group to the leading companies and themes in sustainable innovation. It features the private, independent, for-profit companies best positioned to solve tomorrow’s clean technology challenges. This year marks the 10th edition of the list.

“Econic’s technology allows plastics manufacturers to recycle their captured carbon dioxide into existing plants to make products at lower cost, with improved properties and more sustainably. Carbon dioxide is incorporated directly without the need for energy and resource intensive transformation, turning it from an expensive problem to a profit enhancing opportunity at the same time as reducing the reliance on oil as a raw material, thereby cutting harmful emissions in the industrial process.

“Adoption of this technology in the first market will see the equivalent of 4M cars worth of carbon dioxide emissions saved annually, and we are thrilled that the Global Cleantech 100 has recognised both Econic Technologies and the potential of carbon dioxide as a raw material. This is a further vote of confidence in the growing carbon capture utilisation sector”, said Dr Rowena Sellens, CEO of Econic Technologies.

The list combines Cleantech Group’s research data with qualitative judgements from nominations and insight from a global 87-member expert panel comprised of leading investors and experts from corporations and industrials active in technology and innovation scouting. From pioneers and veterans to new entrants, the expert panel broadly represents the global cleantech community and results in a list with a powerful base of respect and support from many important players within the cleantech innovation ecosystem. The list is sponsored by Chubb.

“Our tenth edition is dominated by innovations for the future of food and mobility, and a decentralized and digitized future not only for energy, but for the industrial world more generally,said Richard Youngman, CEO, Cleantech Group. “This is a far cry from the dominance of hardware, solar and biofuels in the inaugural Global Cleantech 100 in 2009.”

The complete list of 100 companies was revealed on 28 January at the 17th annual Cleantech Forum in San Francisco.


For further information, please contact:
Alex Kane, Farrer Kane: +44 (0) 20 7415 7154 | alex@farrerkane.com
Max Jewell, Farrer Kane: +44 (0) 20 7415 7154 | maxjewell@farrerkane.com

To find out how we can help turn waste CO2 into added value for your business, please contact:
Richard French, Business Development Director Econic Technologies | +44 1625 238 644

Author, Anthea Blackburn

UK’s first carbon capture utilisation demonstration plant opens its doors

The opening event was held on March 1st at The Heath. In attendance was John Lewis, Managing Director of SOG, pictured here with Dr Rowena Sellens, CEO of Econic.

Clean-tech pioneer Econic Technologies has opened a first-of-its-kind plant in the UK to demonstrate to customers how its innovative catalyst technologies can convert CO2 into polyols, which can then be used to make more sustainable polyurethanes for use in products such as automobiles, bedding and footwear.

The new plant is located in Runcorn, at The Heath, one of the UK’s leading independently-owned business and technical parks. It comprises all elements of the production process, integrated from reaction through to final product treatment, in a bespoke industrial unit. Opening its new plant at The Heath demonstrates Econic Technologies’ long term commitment to the North West following its relocation from London to Cheshire in 2017, with the company adding 12 new jobs across its two Cheshire locations since the move.

The new demonstration plant is an exciting step forward in Econic Technologies’ journey to help manufacturers unlock the positive potential of waste CO2.  Until now, the creation of polyols from CO2 has been performed in plants at high-pressures and temperatures. Thanks to its new tunable catalyst technology, Econic Technologies’ plant will be able to produce samples of CO2-based polyols at lower, industrially relevant temperatures and pressures.

The launch of the plant comes just weeks after Econic announced that they had closed a major founding round which saw climate investment group OGCI Ventures coming on board alongside existing investors. As well as private capital investment, the demonstration plant has also received substantial European support through a Horizon 2020 SME Award. Rulande Rutgers, Head of Process and Product Engineering at Econic Technologies explains: “Securing such highly competitive public funding has been an important vote of confidence for Econic Technologies, and is allowing the company to accelerate development pace. Using some of this funding for the new demonstration plant is one way it is helping turn the potential of our catalysts into reality.”

Rowena Sellens, CEO of Econic Technologies, commented: “The demonstration plant is essential to helping our pioneering catalyst technologies develop as they move out of the lab and into the factory. As a company, we want to help drive the market adoption of polyols and our new plant provides an opportunity for us to encourage significant uptake in the industry. The interest from polyol manufacturers and downstream polyol users in the plant has been overwhelming already. We are extremely confident that once we start demonstrating what our technology can do, we will help catalyse a transformation in attitude when it comes to the positive potential of carbon.”

Econic Technologies’ catalysts enable manufacturers to reuse waste CO2, by allowing it to be incorporated as a feedstock, which offers not only a sustainable benefit by reducing the reliance on fossil fuels but also an economical benefit by enhancing margins. The company hopes that by 2027, 30% of all polyol production will take place using Econic’s catalyst technologies, which could save 3.5 million tonnes of CO2 emissions each year – the equivalent to taking two million cars off the road.


For further information, please contact:
Alex Kane, Farrer Kane: +44 (0) 20 7415 7154 | alex@farrerkane.com
Max Jewell, Farrer Kane: +44 (0) 20 7415 7154 | maxjewell@farrerkane.com

For more information on Econic or to inquire about our catalyst technologies, please contact:
Richard French, Business Development Director Econic Technologies | +44 1625 238 645

 

Author, Anthea Blackburn