Genecis – 28 July
Genecis converts organic food waste into biodegradable plastic through its technology platform that allows it to capture value from waste. Genecis strives to leverage its technology and team towards a mission in driving a circular economy, where major brands utilize eco-friendly PHA plastics in their services to reduce the 18 million pounds of plastics polluting our oceans.
As of today, there are no noted commercial players in the PHA space. The largest quantities seen commercially available are in the 3-5,000 metric tonne range of production output per year. When compared to most plastic manufacturers who deal with significantly larger quantities, it’s still a very early stage market for Genecis’ product. However, the demand is high which is accounted for by the sheer number of players in this space looking to solve the same problem.
Genecis breaks down its competitors into two groups: those who use sugar feedstocks to make PHAs and those who use waste residues to make PHAs. When comparing themselves against those who use sugars to make PHAs, there’s an evident cost-competitive advantage that Genecis holds. While these organizations need to pay to generate the feedstock they use in their process, Genecis gets paid to take in the feedstock and produce the same high-quality resins. For the competitors who use waste residues, Genecis allocates their efforts to the bacteria and process optimization aspect of things in order to generate better yields, higher efficiency, and more optimized processes in the face of competition.
Genecis is currently working with a number of different partners within the foodservice and waste industries while conducting product development for specific applications.
Recently, Genecis has been garnering a mass of publicity through a number of competitions they’ve placed 1st in, such as Novo Nordisk’s Innovation Challenge, Extreme Tech Challenge (XTC), and Lead 2030 supported by Mondi.
In a fast-paced company like Genecis, new challenges emerge every day but none have ever proved to limit their capabilities; it’s about how you address them head-on and adapt as needed is the driving force behind their tenacity. For example, with COVID-19, they’ve faced some slow-downs from suppliers and manufacturing partners. This setback allowed them to reevaluate certain components of their work to come to the realization that with the right planning and resource allocation, they could complete some of these tasks in-house. As a result, they ended up saving time and money when originally they were expecting considerable delays to their timelines. Adapting like this really makes a difference when there are long-term goals and milestones that must be met regardless of how difficult external factors may be.
Hasitha de Alwis, Director of R&D
Patrick Neil, Director of Engineering
Marcos Igreja, Associate Director of Engineering Operations
Genecis attributes all of their accomplishments to the efforts of the science, engineering, business and operations teams. All 16 members of the team are highly valuable and contribute immensely to where Genecis is today.
After having just closed a Seed Round II, Genecis is not currently looking to raise further capital until 2021. With big initiatives ahead, you can expect to hear some more details in the near future!
With plans for expansion, Genecis recently onboarded an expert to head up their Engineering department and is currently looking to continue these growth plans well into 2021. Specifically, they are looking to expand their science, operations, and materials capacities through strategic hires over the coming months/year.
Currently, Genecis generates revenue through product development work completed with their partners who are interested in specific applications using their PHA plastics. For the majority of these partners, they are interested in seeing how the functionality, sustainability profile, and price of Genecis’ PHAs can help them achieve their sustainability metrics or serve as a sustainable alternative to the petroleum-based plastics they would usually use in their products.
Another following channel of revenue is through the work with waste managers or food service providers who are interested in seeing how Genecis’ conversion process and bacteria can be used in their respective industries to produce products of high value from waste. This is primarily done through a licensing model.
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