Traceless Materials, a bio economy startup headquartered in Hamburg, made a siginificant announcement, revealing that it has successfully secured €36.6 Million in funding through a Series A Round. The funding round was spearheaded by UB FIGG and SWEN CP’s Blue Ocean Fund.
The financing round saw active involvement from a local banking consortium that included GLS Bank and Hamburger Sparkasse. Additionally, three of the company’s existing investors, namely green-tech investor Planet A Ventures, seed investor High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF), and deep tech investor b.value, also participated enthusiastically in this funding endeavor.
The German firm has outlined its intent to utilize these funds to substantially scale up the production capabilities of its pioneering biomaterial technology, propelling it into the realm of large-scale industrial production.
This announcement follows closely on the heels of the company’s recent selection for Norrsken’s prestigious 2023 Impact/100 list. This annual ranking recognizes the top 100 companies that are making a positive and transformative impact on the world, further cementing Traceless Materials’ position as a key player in the sustainable technology landscape.
About Traceless Materials
Plastic pollution poses a grave concern, leaving not only visible traces but also significantly contributing to the climate crisis due to its resource-intensive production from fossil fuels.
In a dedicated effort to address this issue sustainably, Traceless Materials has pioneered a fully bio-based, home-compostable, and entirely plastic-free biomaterial known as “traceless.”
Anne Lamp, Co-Founder & CEO, underscores the transformative potential of their innovative technology, stating, “Through scaling our innovative technology, we prove that a climate-friendly, circular, resilient, and regenerative industry is possible. With our novel biomaterial, we can make a significant contribution to solving plastic pollution. We are convinced that UB FIGG and SWEN’s Blue Ocean fund are a great addition to our shareholders as they have relevant knowledge in our industry. The fact that both our investors and the banks fully support our mission was a decisive criterion for us.”
Founded in 2020 by Dr. Anne Lamp and Johanna Baare, Traceless Materials specializes in transforming agricultural industry plant remnants into natural biomaterials that are not only bio-based, home-compostable, and free from plastic but also boast a remarkably low ecological footprint.
This natural biomaterial is meticulously crafted from agricultural residues, conserving precious biomass resources while avoiding potentially harmful chemicals, thereby leaving a minimal ecological footprint. In terms of environmental impact, Traceless outperforms plastic, saving a remarkable 91 percent of CO2 emissions and 89 percent of fossil energy requirements during both production and disposal stages.
To realize the full-scale potential of their technology, Traceless is actively constructing a demonstration plant in Hamburg. The company projects that this production facility will displace thousands of tons of conventional plastic annually, substantially reducing CO2 emissions, conserving fossil resources, and safeguarding water sources and agricultural land.
Johanna Baare, Co-Founder & COO, acknowledges the unique challenges faced by capital-intensive startups in the industrial manufacturing sector, emphasizing, “Financing capital-intensive startups is still unfamiliar to many investors and banks. This makes it a special challenge for industrial manufacturing start-ups like us that are developing the innovative technologies of tomorrow. We are very pleased that with UB FIGG, SWEN CP, Planet A, HTGF, and b.value, the local bank consortium, we have found partners who share our vision and have recognized and understood the challenges of financing our hardware scale-up.”
About the Investor
UB FIGG is a private equity fund with a distinct focus on investing in companies committed to the substitution of plastic and other fossil fuel-based materials. Additionally, they prioritize the efficient utilization and enhanced value extraction from wood and agricultural raw material byproducts. UB FIGG also seeks to foster wider adoption of these raw materials across a spectrum of intermediate and end applications.
Sakari Saarela, Partner at UB FIGG, emphasizes the appeal of Traceless Materials’ approach, where readily available agricultural byproducts are harnessed to replace fossil-based plastics. He highlights both the economic viability and the ecological benefits of this approach. The Traceless team has garnered impressive achievements in terms of material performance, rapid development cycles, and the successful commercialization of this groundbreaking material. Saarela expresses the fund’s enthusiasm for supporting Anne, Johanna, and the entire team in scaling up this innovative technology.
SWEN Capital Partners is a prominent player in the responsible investment landscape in private assets across Europe, managing a portfolio exceeding €7.7 billion. They offer a diverse array of investment programs catering to institutional and private clients.
Olivier Raybaud, Managing Director of SWEN Capital Partners, sheds light on the Blue Ocean Fund’s mission, which centers on investing in startups that bring innovative solutions to address three critical threats to our oceans: overfishing, ocean pollution, and climate change.
Recognizing plastic pollution as a primary menace to our oceans, Raybaud explains the allure of Traceless. This bio-based and biodegradable material has the potential to supplant plastics in products that are prone to entering the environment, including single-use packaging, as well as hidden plastics found in adhesives and paper coatings. Raybaud underscores that Traceless presents a compelling alternative for applications where reusable solutions are not sustainable, and technical recycling is not a feasible option.