Chemical recycling startup DePoly announced today that it has raised CHF12.3 million (USD$13.8 million) in a seed funding round to help scale the company’s solution addressing challenges with recycling plastics used for applications such as textiles and consumer packaging.
Founded in 2020 by co-founders CEO Samantha Anderson, CTO Bardiya Valizadeh, and CSO Christopher Ireland, DePoly offers a chemical recycling process that converts post-consumer and post-industrial plastic waste streams into their main raw components, helping to solve challenges that can prevent plastic from being recycled, such as the high cost and difficulty involved in sorting, separating, and cleaning complex plastic streams.
The technology converts all PET and polyester textiles back into their raw material components, without requiring any pre-washing, pre-sorting, pre-melting, or separating out other plastics or materials, and operating at room temperature and standard pressure. Raw materials from the process can be sold to make new virgin-quality plastic items.
The company currently runs a pilot plant processing 50 tonnes per year of complex PET or polyester plastic streams, and is also building a new showcase plant with a capacity of 500 tonnes per year to fulfil commercial-scale capabilities.
Samantha Anderson, CEO and co-founder of DePoly, said:
“By recycling pre- / post-consumer and post-industrial plastics that otherwise would be sent to incineration centers or be landfilled, we at DePoly aim to eliminate plastic waste and create a sustainable source of chemicals by diverting this waste from our environment and lowering our carbon footprint up to 65% at the same time. The raw materials produced match that of their fossil-fuel-based equivalents, meaning customers no longer have to choose between PET quality and its sustainability.”
The seed funding round was co-led by venture capital firms BASF Venture Capital and Wingman Ventures, and included participation from Beiersdorf, Infinity Recycling, CIECH Ventures, Angel Invest, and others.
Antonia Albert, Principal at Wingman Ventures, said:
“DePoly is paving the way for a truly sustainable plastic economy. We are extremely proud to support DePoly since day one on their journey to tackle this planetary crisis to clean our oceans and landfills from plastic waste and to welcome leading investors from the chemicals, recycling, climate- and deep tech space on board to build the global leader for the sustainable plastics recycling.”
Markus Solibieda, Managing Director at BASF Venture Capital, added:
“To truly implement the circular plastics economy, we must transform our business practices, and that requires collaborative efforts from various stakeholders. DePoly’s technology offers a promising solution to address the global plastic waste challenge and concurrently support the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions related to the production of virgin plastics.”