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Lactips raises €13m to ramp up milk-based bioplastics production

“With its natural, biodegradable and edible polymer, Lactips is a game changer that holds the promise to help reducing plastic pollution in landfills and oceans.”

Lactips, a France-based company which makes water-soluble and biodegradable plastics from the milk protein casein, has raised €13m from venture capital firms, including the investment arm of Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings.

The new infusion of capital will enable Lactips to ramp up its product development and industrial facilities. Lactips now has the financial resources needed to drive the development of its bio-sourced, biodegradable and water-soluble solution, providing an alternative for numerous industrial plastics.

Lactips (@LACTIPS_SA) designs, develops and markets innovative and natural plastics based on a natural raw material with zero environmental impact, the company said in a statement. With this key round of fundraising, Lactips will accelerate the industrialisation of its plastic pellets and films to offer a wider selection of fully biodegradable and recyclable bio-sourced packaging.

The company will press forward with its breakthrough in the packaging products, to respond to the issue of micro-plastics ending up in the oceans.

The funding round was led by Bpifrance’s SPI (Société de Projet Industriel) fund, managed on behalf of the French Government as part of the Investments for the Future Program (PIA), and Diamond Edge Ventures (DEV), the innovation investment arm of Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings.

Lactips will be looking to conquer certain packaging markets in the food and construction sectors as well as single-use packaging. Lactips said its industrial project is being supported by the SPI fund within Bpifrance, which, through this operation, wants to help drive progress with “this essential industry for the ecological transition, while helping create an industry in France with a strong future in this area”.

Lactips is also being supported by MCHC, which is committed to develop and offer solutions for a sustainable future. In Japan, which aims to recycle 100% of new plastics by 2035 by developing biodegradable replacement solutions, this support will be not only financial, but also industrial and commercial.

“This €13m fundraising is structural and strategic at the same time, thanks to these two new shareholders. More than ever, our industries need new solutions to respond to future economic challenges tied to the goal of reducing the environmental impact of plastics. Since our company’s inception, we have successfully demonstrated that our innovative material can cover a wide range of applications. This support for our mission, built around a vision of an economy that is more respectful of the environment and human health, will enable us to rapidly transition to production phase, while continuing to develop the planet’s greenest plastic”, states Marie-Hélène GRAMATIKOFF, CEO and cofounder of Lactips.

Jean-Philippe RICHARD, Investment Director with Bpifrance’s SPI fund: “We are proud to be supporting Marie-Hélène GRAMATIKOFF and her teams to accelerate the development of Lactips’ products, and to have successfully completed this fundraising in the current context of the global pandemic. Our commitment illustrates Bpifrance’s core values and its commitment to supporting jobs through the structuring of an innovative industrial sector in the Energy and Environmental Transition field”.

“The cooperation with Lactips underscores our direction towards circular economy and our commitment to Europe as an important market. It perfectly complements our growing portfolio of sustainable materials. Supporting the development of environmentally friendly products like those of Lactips aligns with our vision of ‘KAITEKI’, which signifies the sustainable well-being of people, society and our planet Earth,” said Ansgar POHL, President and CEO Mitsubishi Chemical Europe, the regional headquarters for Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation in Europe.

“With its natural, biodegradable and edible polymer, Lactips is a game changer that holds the promise to help reducing plastic pollution in landfills and oceans. Lactips offers Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation a unique platform to tackle the challenges created by plastics contamination and we’re looking forward to multiple collaborations to solve such issues in Japan and beyond,” said Patrick SUEL, President de Diamond Edge Ventures.

If you were interested in this bioeconomy story, you may also be interested in the ones below.

Read: IMCD Group inks distribution partnership with Lactips to market milk protein-based thermoplastic pellets.

Read: Could milk protein be the solution to our plastic packaging crisis?

Read: Video: Making edible food packaging made from milk proteins.

Read: Bioplastics to ‘play key role’ in implementation of circular economy and EU environmental directives.

Read: The reinvention of bio-plastics: New kids on the block.

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