Aqdot announces appointment of Chief Technology Officer

Aqdot, the Cambridge (UK) based specialist chemical company, with a focus in intelligent encapsulation, is pleased to announce the appointment of Joop de Rooij as Chief Technical Officer.

Joop brings a wealth of experience in the development and scale-up of processes into economic profitable operations. Prior to joining he fulfilled senior management roles in Technology, Research & Development and Manufacturing at Akzo Nobel and Albemarle Corporation.

Tim Wright, CEO at Aqdot, said:

“We are delighted to have Joop join our team. As Aqdot continues to grow rapidly Joop’s experience and expertise in scale up and establishment of manufacturing capabilities will prove invaluable.”

For further information, please contact:

Aqdot Ltd

Tim Wright, CEO

Tel: 01223 928000

 

About Aqdot®

Aqdot is a specialist chemical company based in Cambridge (UK).  The Company specialises in developing and commercialising disruptive encapsulation technologies that enable valuable actives (cargos) to be protected, delivered and released when required.

In this modern age we interact with encapsulated products throughout our day, be it the materials and fuels in our transportation, flavourings in our food, fragrances in our toiletries or the pharmaceuticals we may take. To date the challenge has been in triggering encapsulation systems to release their cargo when the customer needs them. For example, the release of enzymes in a biological detergent when they enter the wash so they can take away stains. It is this unique proprietary capability that Aqdot™’s platform technology delivers.

This approach enables Aqdot’s customers to increase product effectiveness, introduce novel and differentiated brands, reduce manufacturing costs and positively impact the environment. Originally spun out of Cambridge University, Aqdot is currently focused in developing products in the household, fragrance and niche industrial sectors.  Future potential applications include agrochemicals and pharmaceuticals.

For further information, please visit www.aqdot.com.

Aqdot announces £5 million Series A funding round

Aqdot is pleased to announce completion of an oversubscribed series A funding round of £5m. Touchstone Innovations led the round alongside Parkwalk Advisors, Cambridge Enterprise, the commercialisation arm of the University of Cambridge, and Providence Investment Company.

Aqdot operates in the rapidly growing encapsulation market, currently valued at £4bn.  Its proprietary technologies encapsulate and protect valuable active materials (cargos) in a variety of settings. Uniquely, using a variety of triggers, this enables the release of cargos when and where the customer requires.

Aqdot is now engaged with customers across a number of sectors. Initially the company is focusing on household products, fragrances and niche industrial applications. Future potential applications include agrochemicals and pharmaceuticals.

Tim Wright, CEO of Aqdot said:

“With such a fantastic platform, technology focus is key.  Over recent months, working with our investors, the team has developed a strategic plan, tailored our technology and completed our first agreements with target customers.  We are delighted to have completed this round of funding, which enables us to progress our products to market.”

Kelsey Lynn Skinner, Director Technology Ventures at Touchstone Innovations said:

“Aqdot has taken significant steps forward since the last funding round in particular in customer engagement and application-specific technology development.  Aqdot has a strong team in place, and we are proud to lead this Series A round alongside other leading co-investors to enable the continued execution of the strategy”.

For further information, please contact:

Aqdot Ltd

Tim Wright, CEO

Tel: 01223 928000

 

About Aqdot®

Aqdot is a specialist chemical company based in Cambridge (UK).  The Company specialises in developing and commercialising disruptive encapsulation technologies that enable valuable actives (cargos) to be protected, delivered and released when required.

In this modern age we interact with encapsulated products throughout our day, be it the materials and fuels in our transportation, flavourings in our food, fragrances in our toiletries or the pharmaceuticals we may take. To date the challenge has been in triggering encapsulation systems to release their cargo when the customer needs them. For example, the release of enzymes in a biological detergent when they enter the wash so they can take away stains. It is this unique proprietary capability that Aqdot’s platform technology delivers.

This approach enables Aqdot’s customers to increase product effectiveness, introduce novel and differentiated brands, reduce manufacturing costs and positively impact the environment.Originally spun out of Cambridge University, Aqdot is currently focused in developing products in the household, fragrance and niche industrial sectors.  Future potential applications include agrochemicals and pharmaceuticals

For further information, please visit www.aqdot.com.

 

About Touchstone Innovations

Touchstone Innovations Business LLP creates, builds and invests in pioneering technology companies and licensing opportunities developed from outstanding scientific research from the ‘Golden Triangle’, the geographical region broadly bounded by London, Cambridge and Oxford. This area has an unrivalled cluster of outstanding academic research and technology businesses, and is home to four of the world’s top 10 universities, as well as leading research institutions, the cream of the UK’s science and technology businesses and many of its leading investors.

Innovations supports scientists and entrepreneurs in the commercialisation of their ideas, through the licensing of intellectual property, by leading the formation of new companies, by recruiting high-calibre management teams and by providing investment and encouraging co-investment. Innovations remains an active investor over the life of its portfolio companies, with the majority of Innovations’ investment going into businesses in which it is already a shareholder.

Since becoming a public company in 2006, Innovations has raised more than £346.0 million of equity from investors, which has enabled it to invest in some of the most exciting spin-outs to come out of UK academic research. In addition, the Group has agreed £80.0 million in loan facilities from the European Investment Bank (EIB).

Between Innovations’ admission to AIM (August 2006) and 31 July 2015, Innovations has invested a total of £236.8 million across its portfolio companies, which have raised collectively investment of £1.3 billion.

More information can be found at http://www.touchstoneinnovations.co.uk

 

About Parkwalk Advisors

Parkwalk is an independent investment firm dedicated to providing clients with access to some of the most exciting deal-flow emanating from British R&D intensive institutions and Universities. Parkwalk invests in, and raises capital for, innovative UK technology companies. The Funds are investment-driven venture capital funds, seeking capital appreciation. Parkwalk portfolio companies all have deeply-embedded IP and commercial potential, and range from early stage seed capital, through development and commercial capital to AIM-listed investments.

More information can be found at www.parkwalkadvisors.com

 

About Cambridge Enterprise

Cambridge Enterprise Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of the University of Cambridge, responsible for the commercialisation of University intellectual property. Activities include management and licensing of intellectual property and patents, proof of concept funding and support for University staff and research groups wishing to provide expert advice or facilities to public and private sector organisations. Cambridge Enterprise provides access to angel and early stage capital through Cambridge Enterprise Seed Funds, University of Cambridge Enterprise Funds, Cambridge Innovation Capital and Cambridge Enterprise Venture Partners, and offers business planning, mentoring, and other related programmes.

More information can be found at http://www.enterprise.cam.ac.uk

Aqdot Closes £2.55m Funding Round

Aqdot a specialist chemical company originally spun out of Cambridge University, with a focus in intelligent encapsulation, has completed a £2.55m oversubscribed funding round.

The round was led by Touchstone Innovations, alongside Cambridge Enterprise, Providence Investment Company and Parkwalk Advisors. Due to the potentially significant environmental benefit of the technology, the company has also been supported by Climate-KIC, receiving approximately €135,000 through different Climate-KIC funded initiatives.

Aqdot will use the funds to further develop and commercialise its platform encapsulation technology. The company’s proprietary technology, originally developed at the University of Cambridge, enables valuable active products to be protected, delivered and chemically programmed to release where and when required.  The technology can be game changing in a wide range of sectors including oil and gas,  pharmaceuticals and household products.  It enables customers to introduce novel and differentiated brands, reduce manufacturing costs and make a positive impact on the environment.

As an illustration, in biological laundry products enzymes are a vital part of the ‘cleaning power’.  Currently the enzymes are substantially destroyed by other detergent components before use. By encapsulating the enzymes, in Aqdot’s “AQ-wash” product, it is possible to protect them and programme them to release only at the start of the wash. This reduces the amount of enzyme and detergent needed for a wash cycle and enables a lower temperature wash, resulting in significant carbon dioxide reduction.

Tim Wright, CEO at Aqdot, said:

“The continued support from our seed investors and interest from new investors demonstrates the robustness of our technology and underlines the rapid progress Aqdot is making. This funding round enables us to continue to innovate and develop our products in parallel while taking the first wave through to commercialisation. I am grateful to former CEO John Hamlin and the Aqdot team for making this possible.”

Kelsey Lynn Skinner, Director Technology Ventures at Touchstone Innovations, said:

“We are proud to lead this round of investment alongside top-notch co-investors. Aqdot is a perfect example of high quality science leading to novel products, with many potential benefits to industry and society.”

For further information, please contact:

Aqdot Ltd

Tim Wright, CEO

01223 334 319

 

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About Aqdot® – http://www.aqdot.com/

Aqdot is a specialist chemical company with a focus and expertise in intelligent encapsulation technology.  Aqdot’s proprietary technology and know-how enables valuable active products to be protected, delivered and chemically programmed to release where and when required.

This unique and disruptive platform technology, originally discovered and spun out of Cambridge University, has the potential to be game-changing in a wide range of industries, including household products such as detergents, pharmaceuticals, oil and gas, agrochemicals, cosmetics, food, paint, fragrances and personal products.

Identifying unmet needs in these sectors, Aqdot develops products that enable our customers to introduce novel and differentiated brands, reduce manufacturing costs and make a truly positive impact on the environment.

 

About Touchstone Innovations – http://www.touchstoneinnovations.co.uk/

Touchstone Innovations Business LLP creates, builds and invests in pioneering technologies developed from the academic research within the ‘Golden Triangle’ broadly bounded by London, Cambridge and Oxford, which is home to the UK’s four leading research-intensive universities.

This area is home to many new technology companies through its proximity to the academic communities of Imperial College London, the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford and University College London, as well as other leading research institutions.

Imperial College London, the University of Cambridge, the University of Oxford and University College London collectively have research income of £1.4 billion per annum and are ranked as four of the top ten Universities in the world (source: QS World University Rankings 2014/15).

Innovations supports scientists and entrepreneurs in the commercialisation of their ideas through the licensing of intellectual property, by leading the formation of new companies, providing facilities in the early stages, providing investment and encouraging co-investment to accelerate development, providing operational expertise and recruiting high-calibre management teams. It also runs an incubator in London that is the initial home for many of its technology spin-outs.

Since admission of its shares to trading on AIM in 2006, Innovations has raised more than £346.0 million of equity from investors, which has enabled it to invest in some of the most exciting spin-outs to come out of UK academic research. In addition, the Group has a £30.0 million loan facility from the European Investment Bank (EIB) for investment in biotech and therapeutics businesses.

During the period from admission on AIM up until 31 July 2014, Innovations has invested a total of £176.0 million across its portfolio companies, which have raised collectively investment of £822.5 million.

 

About Parkwalk Advisors

Parkwalk is an independent investment firm dedicated to providing clients with access to some of the most exciting deal-flow emanating from British R&D intensive institutions and Universities. Parkwalk invests in, and raises capital for, innovative UK technology companies. The Funds are investment-driven venture capital funds, seeking capital appreciation. Parkwalk portfolio companies all have deeply-embedded IP and commercial potential, and range from early stage seed capital, through development and commercial capital to AIM-listed investments. More information can be found at www.parkwalkadvisors.com.

 

About Cambridge Enterprise – http://www.enterprise.cam.ac.uk

Cambridge Enterprise Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of the University of Cambridge, responsible for the commercialisation of University intellectual property. Activities include management and licensing of intellectual property and patents, proof of concept funding and support for University staff and research groups wishing to provide expert advice or facilities to public and private sector organisations. Cambridge Enterprise provides access to angel and early stage capital through Cambridge Enterprise Seed Funds, University of Cambridge Enterprise Funds, Cambridge Innovation Capital and Cambridge Enterprise Venture Partners, and offers business planning, mentoring, and other related programmes.

 

About Climate-KIC – http://www.climate-kic.org/

Climate-KIC is the EU’s main climate innovation initiative. It is Europe’s largest public-private innovation partnership focused on mitigating and adapting to climate change. Climate-KIC consists of companies, academic institutions and the public sector.

The organisation has its headquarters in London, UK, and leverages its centres across Europe to support start-up companies, to bring together partners on innovation projects and to educate students to bring about a connected, creative transformation of knowledge and ideas into products and services that help mitigate and adapt to climate change.

Climate-KIC currently has centres in France, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland, the UK, a Nordic centre in Denmark and is represented in the regions of Valencia, Central Hungary, Emilia Romagna, Lower Silesia, Hessen and the West Midlands.

Climate-KIC is one of the Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs) created in 2010 by the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), the EU body tasked with creating sustainable European growth while dealing with the global challenges of our time.

Aqdot Appoints New CEO

Aqdot, a specialist chemical company with a focus in intelligent encapsulation, announces the appointment of Tim Wright as Chief Executive Officer.

Tim brings a wealth of experience having successfully developed, licensed and grown brands and businesses at all stages of their lifecycle.  Prior to joining he co-founded Solent Pharma Ltd, a privately held speciality pharmaceutical company and has undertaken consulting projects supporting a variety of businesses as they develop growth and funding strategies. Previously Tim was CEO of IS Pharma plc, which he led through turnaround to become a substantial, profitable business. Tim has previously held senior domestic and international commercial roles with Élan, SmithKline Beecham and Pfizer.

Tim succeeds Dr John Hamlin, a company founder who has been CEO since 2012. John will remain actively involved and serve on the board as a non-executive director.  John led Aqdot during its rapid growth from concept to a successful specialist chemical company that has raised in excess of £3.5m funding to date.

Dr Peter Fields, Non-Executive Chairman at Aqdot, said:

“We are delighted to have Tim join our team. His experience with early-stage companies and expertise in product and business development will prove invaluable as we develop and grow Aqdot.”

“On behalf of the Board I would like to extend our thanks to John for the vital role he has played in building Aqdot and I am very pleased that he will continue to work with the company as a director and advisor”.

Tim Wright, CEO at Aqdot, said:

“The combination of disruptive, proprietary technology, a world-class scientific team coupled with a strong, supportive board and  investor group make this a very exciting opportunity.  Our encapsulation technology will be game-changing across a number of high value sectors from household products to pharmaceuticals to oil and gas.  I am delighted to be leading the Aqdot team as we drive the growth and value of the business.”

For further information, please contact:

Aqdot Ltd
Tim Wright, CEO
01223 334 319

Aqdot successfully closes seed funding round

Touchstone Innovations Business LLPc (AIM: IVO, ‘Innovations’), a leading technology commercialisation and investment group, has invested £350k and led a new seed funding round of almost £1 million ($1.6 million) into Aqdot Limited. Cambridge Enterprise, Parkwalk Advisors, and Providence Investment Company joined Touchstone in the investment round.

The funds raised in this round will be used to further the development of the Aqdot technology and partnerships with companies in the selected markets.

Aqdot has developed a proprietary and disruptive chemical encapsulation technology that enables extremely tiny droplets to be produced to carry ‘active materials’: for example cleaning enzymes used in domestic detergents, and agrochemicals for crop treatment. The high stability and robustness of the droplets allows for a finely controlled release of the contained ingredients while using much less encapsulation material than traditional products. In addition to giving value to producers and consumers, the reduction in wasted active materials also yields significant environmental and sustainability benefits.

The company is engaged with a number of interested corporate partners across a variety of industries and is prioritising opportunities in home care, personal care, nutraceuticals and agrochemicals.

The science that underpins Aqdot technology was developed at Cambridge University Department of Chemistry under senior academics Professor Chris Abell and Dr Oren Scherman, both of whom join Aqdot’s Scientific Advisory Board. The Cambridge University co-inventors Dr Jing Zhang and Dr Roger Coulston join the company as Director Operations and Chief Scientific Officer, respectively.

Innovations Entrepreneur-in-Residence Dr John Hamlin joins as the launch CEO bringing his 25 years of experience in senior business and technology positions in BP Chemicals. The Company has recruited as Chairman, Dr Peter Fields, who, after 20 years at ICI, implemented a buy-and-build strategy as COO to grow European specialty chemical distribution company, Azelis, from €330m to €1.1b in revenue.

Innovations Director Kelsey Lynn joins the Aqdot board of directors.

Kelsey Lynn, Director Technology Ventures at Innovations, said:

“We are delighted to lead this investment round alongside Cambridge Enterprise and other high quality investors to build a company that can change the landscape of controlled release functionality in encapsulation.

Aqdot benefits from a wealth of research undertaken at one of the world’s leading chemistry departments and is already receiving interest from a variety of large corporates. We are excited to be involved with the company at this early stage in its development.”

Roger Coulston, Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Aqdot Ltd, said:

“Instead of licensing to industry, we decided to form a company and to commercialize the technology through active industry engagement. We chose as funding partner Touchstone Innovations because of their experience and insight in building high-growth companies based on academic research. We look forward to creating early value with this disruptive and novel technology through a number of partnerships in different industry segments.”

See more at: http://www.touchstoneinnovations.co.uk/news-centre/news/innovations-leads-seed-funding-round-cambridge-spi/

Aqdot wins at the 2013 European Venture Competition

 

Climate-KIC’s annual Innovation Festival was held this year in Wroclaw, Poland. A total of 13 start-ups were judged by a panel of investors and representatives from industry as well as the hundreds of climate innovators in the audience who voted for their favorite start-up by sending a text message.

Aqdot was awarded the second prize of €20.000 in the European Finals of Climate-KIC’s 2013 Venture Competition.

Aqdot, a Cambridge-based company, pitched technology that allows for an energy efficient way of manufacturing microcapsules while reducing the usage of raw materials, leading to lower energy consumption and less waste.

Switzland-based OsmoBlue has won the €40.000 first prize and Netherland-based Pectocof were awarded €20,000 in a joint second prize as an Italian start-up picked up the audience award.

More information can be found on Climate-KIC.

Aqdot wins Climate-UK Venture Competition

At a pitching session and awards ceremony in London on 2 September, Climate-KIC UK has announced the two winning start-ups – Econic Technologies and Aqdot – in the UK rounds of Climate-KIC’s Venture Competition.

Aqdot‘s technology allows for an energy- and raw material-efficient way of manufacturing microcapsules, leading to lower energy consumption and less waste.

Potential applications include encapsulating enzymes in laundry detergents, or encapsulating fertilisers in the agrochemical sector. Microencapsulation is a multi-billion-per-annum industry with established applications in household and personal care, food and agrochemical markets.

Winners receive a grant of €20.000 and a spot in the European finals. The event took place at the Royal College of Music’s Britten Theatre in South Kensington.

The winners were selected by a jury made up of Craig Lucas, Head of Innovation and Engineering at the UK’s Department of Energy and Climate Change; Akira Kirton, Venturing Principle EMEI at BP; Kelsey Lynn, Director Technology Ventures at Touchstone Innovations and Jonathan Tyler, Chief Commercial Officer, Climate-KIC.

More information can be found on Climate-KIC.

Aqdot wins RSC Emerging Technologies Competition 2013

Aqdot has won the first RSC Emerging Technologies Competition for 2013.

The event was organised by the Royal Society of Chemistry to identify and support research-intensive small enterprises and academics on the path to commercialise technology in chemical sciences with significant potential impact for the UK economy.

Dr Jing Zhang and Dr Roger Coulston presented to a judging panel including private sector companies. The award was given to Aqdot based on merit and the potential impact of the technology. The prize will help Aqdot to work with industry partners and access further investment from members of the selection panel.

The prize was presented to Aqdot by Dr Robert Parker, RSC Chief Executive, and Rt Hon David Willetts MP, Minister for Universities and Science.

Aqdot wins NCourage Women Entrepreneur Award at Rice Business Plan Competition

Aqdot was also commended for having a woman cofounder and lead-presenter in the Rice Business Plan Competition to be awarded the Courageous Women Entrepreneur Award by the nCourage Entrepreneurs Investment Group.

nCourage Entrepreneurs Investment Group is judging The Rice Business Plan Competition and award Women Entrepreneur Award for Third Year.

The Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship will award a new $20,000 Award for Courageous Women Entrepreneurs at the 2013 Rice University Business Plan Competition.

The prize is sponsored by nCourage Entrepreneurs Investment Group consisting of: Cindy Boyd, President of Sentigy; Elizabeth Wiggins, Director, various community boards, Lamar Mathews, President of GP of Falcon Partners, Ltd. and Shelby Scarbrough, President, Practical Protocol. These four courageous entrepreneurs formed “nCourage Entrepreneurs” to invest in people, passion and their plan to execute. Other partners include Winnie Hart of TwinEngine, Sue Hrib of Signum Group, Suzy Ginzburg of Global Communications, and Dr. Lynn Kirkpatrick of Ensysce Bio Sciences. United by their passion to encourage the next generation of women entrepreneurs, and recognize the courage necessary to pursue an entrepreneurial journey, the nCourage team applauds the efforts of this year’s contestants.

Aqdot wins the Fifth Prize at 2013’s Rice Business Plan Competition

Aqdot was awarded the Fifth Prize Award at the Rice Business Plan Competition in Houston, Texas.

After being selected out of more than 400 entries world-wide to participate amongst the final 42 teams in the final round in Houston, Aqdot went through three rounds of pitches and Q&As to more than 150 venture and angel investors and was awarded the Fifth Prize Award (US$4000)  in tonight’s Gala Dinner.

Aqdot is the only non-US team in the final six this year.

The Venture Principal of Shell, Alexander Rozenfeld, presented the prize to the Aqdot team.

The Rice Business Plan Competition has been described as the Super Bowl and World Series, combined, by Fortune and CNN/Money. The world’s richest and largest business plan competition brought 42 top university teams from across the globe to pitch their new technology businesses to a record number of over 300 venture capital and investor judges. Judges evaluate the businesses based on the investment potential of the competitors’ new ventures.

More than 138 past competitors at the Rice Business Plan Competition have successfully launched their companies and are in business today or have had successful exits, and have raised more than $600 million in funding.