December, 5th 2013. San Sebastian, Spain – Graphenea (San Sebastian, Spain), a graphene producer company, has received a $1.36 million investment (€1 million) from Repsol Energy Ventures in a co-investment scheme with CDTI Innvierte venture capital fund. The investment is structured as a capital increase that reinforces Graphenea’s equity and capability to lead the emerging graphene production industry. The funds will be used to accelerate its business plan towards industrialization.
Graphene is a new nanotechnology material formed of a single layer of carbon atoms that has outstanding optical, electrical, thermal and mechanical properties. Graphene materials are widely used in research and development of disruptive energy storage and generation technologies, advanced materials and electronics.
Graphenea is a leading startup in the emerging graphene production market. The company produces graphene films by chemical vapor deposition and graphene powders by chemical exfoliation technologies developed by the company. Materials produced by Graphenea are used for the development of batteries, supercapacitors, solar cells and thermal management materials just to mention a few energy related applications. Graphene materials are also used as polymer additives and advanced composites.
Graphenea has developed a very competitive, scalable and environmental-friendly production process. The company is already supplying graphene materials to large multinationals and is a partner in the $1,36 billion Graphene Flagship European Union Initiative.
Graphenea's strategy is to be focused in graphene production. The company has a pilot plant in the CIC nanoGUNE nanotechnology research center in San Sebastian and partners with large enterprises to introduce graphene materials in the value chain.
With graphene materials used mainly for research and development, the graphene market was just $9 million (€6.6 million) in 2012, and an industry analyst estimates a $100 million (€73.5 million) market in 2018.
“Repsol provides a valuable opportunity that will help us bring our innovative materials to industrial markets. It is more than just an investment – we are gaining access to markets and strategic assistance that will enable us to enter into an industrial scale phase," says Jesus de la Fuente, Graphenea founder and CEO.
This startup technology company employs 11 people; founded by Nanotech private investors group leaded by Jesus de la Fuente, nanoGUNE Research Center and venture capital fund Seed Gipuzkoa, Graphenea has doubled its revenue annually since it was launched.
Currently the company has a production plant in CIC nanoGUNE research center, in San Sebastian, with a graphene production capacity of 150,000 square centimeters per year. Since its foundation Graphenea has created a relevant Intellectual property rights due to its investment in research and development, and this factor has allowed the company to keep a technology leadership position in this global market.