Integrated Graphene is to invest up to £8 million in scaling up production of its graphene foam, branded Gii, to meet surging global demand from the human diagnostics and energy markets.
Founded in 2016, the firm has developed what is said to be the world’s only commercially viable graphene manufacturing process that is currently scaled to high volumes.
Graphene is some 100 times stronger than steel, very light, extremely flexible and a highly efficient conductor of electricity. It has the potential to improve a wide range of applications, including human diagnostics, power storage, electronics, solar power (photovoltaics) and water filtration.
As well as direct manufacturing, Integrated Graphene is designing manufacturing processes for blue-chip companies to effectively bolt onto existing lines, and it also has a team dedicated to supporting organisations to adapt graphene technologies for their products.
The firm’s investment plan will focus on scaling-up the manufacturing of its market-ready graphene enhanced electrodes and super capacitors which are currently being piloted by global businesses in human diagnostics point-of-care testing and smart label asset tracking applications.
Since coming out of “stealth mode” in 2020, the company has won several commercial contracts and ramped up its intellectual property portfolio.
As part of its growth plans, the firm intends to double its existing footprint in Stirling and treble its headcount to 100 over the next three years, hiring a “significant number” of market leading development and commercial experts in the UK, Europe and North America.
The major investment comes on the back of a significantly oversubscribed funding round for an undisclosed sum led by existing investors, Par Equity and Archangels.
Claus Marquordt, co-founder and chief executive of Integrated Graphene, said: “This investment marks a real tipping point for Integrated Graphene and the manufacturing of our unique 3D graphene foam in its first two market-ready products.
“We are actively involved in projects with several global blue-chip companies to deliver high volumes of electrodes and super capacitors that address critical needs in accelerating point of care human diagnostics for a wide range of killer diseases and in enabling low-cost flexible and sustainable power systems for the booming IoT [internet of things], smart label and wearable tech markets.
“By investing now, we will be ready, this year, to produce millions of units per annum from a new facility in Stirling and to transfer the technology at scale to global partners in the future.”
Aidan MacMillan, senior investment manager at Par Equity, said: “Integrated Graphene has developed a game changing, frontier solution with the potential to drive enormous impact across a range of large-scale industries. As existing investors in the business, Par Equity, and a selection of our advisers, have worked closely with Claus and the team to build the business.”
Niki Mckenzie, joint managing director at Archangels, added: “Since we first invested in Integrated Graphene two years ago, the company has moved rapidly from start-up to scale-up and now has its sights focused on meeting increased global demand from multiple sectors.”