Biotic Raises €2m Seed Round to Commodify Biodegradable Plastic Materials

9 November 2022

Rockstart, global early-stage investor and accelerator, announces its co-investment in Biotic, a Rockstart Agrifood portfolio company. The € 2m round was led by Paseo Rosalez, UM6P Ventures, The Yield Lab Asia Pacific, Norfolk Green Ventures, Cambridge Agritech and, alongside with Rockstart. The startup plans to use the funding to build a plant, optimize processes, and increase production capacity.

Biotic envisions a world where plastic is no longer a concern. Their mission is to produce bio-based and safe alternatives to fossil-based plastics, a ~ $500 bn market, at a competitive cost to fossil-based plastics. As a commodity manufacturer producing bioplastic flakes or pellets, their customers range across all industries. Biotic's thermoplastic polymers fit a wide range of plastic applications, from very flexible to very ruggedized products. Their polymers fit with existing production lines and industrial needs, ensuring a seamless transition. Biotic's process extracts the carbon source of biomass, macroalgae, which is naturally grown in every ocean all year long and has positive environmental effects in terms of CO2, is free of endotoxins, and does not compete with arable land. Biotic uses saline water in the process, reducing energy consumption and contamination risks.

Adi Goldman, CEO & Co-founder, Biotic, states:

"We have successfully accomplished multiple polymers' production scaling up, achieved non-sterile and continuous processes, and reduced process costs while conducting pilot projects with Fortune 500 companies. The Seed proceeds will be used to establish our pilot plant, expand the team, enhance process optimizations to increase efficiencies and yields, expedite our in-house capabilities of production to hundreds of kilograms of PHBV polymers monthly, increase the number of produced polymer types, and achieve market validation by strategic corporate partners. We are thrilled to have accumulated such a relevant, strategic, and diverse group of investors that have both the expertise and network to support our growth across regions and industries."

Commenting on the round, Mark Durno, Managing Partner AgriFood, Rockstart, also states:

"Plastic production has grown faster than any other material since the 1970s, a worrying trend in light of climate change. Adi and Eran have demonstrated that they understand the complexity of this challenge and the need for solutions that can fit our current manufacturing and user requirements. This is our third investment in Biotic, and we are proud to be supporting the company on their mission to enable the transition from fossil fuel-derived plastics."

Quote from Albert Douer, Paseo Rosales

"Food security and cost are indispensable for the well-being and survival of humankind. Plastics have become indispensable in our food supply chain, while also generating a huge disposal problem. Solving the problems generated by plastics needs to be done without increasing food waste or incrementing food costs. It is indispensable that solving the plastic problem does not affect the poorest sectors of society. Biotic does just that by developing a cost-effective material that replaces petroleum-based plastics with a natural, bio-degradable material that can be used for existing food packaging applications. We bring industrial and market expertise that will help Biotic quickly scale as it develops its technology. Paseo Rosales already has several investments in the Israeli enviro-tech sector, including UBQ Materials, where it was also an early investor and has played a key part in its growth."

"UM6P Ventures is excited to provide both capital and scientific resources through our subject matter experts and Material Sciences Lab as Biotic continues to increase its processes, production capabilities, and talent pool. We look forward to seeing not only their expansion, but the continuance of their positive impact on the environment," said Yasser Biaz, CEO, UM6P Ventures.

Uros Lekic, Founder comments:

"Plastics are indispensable for humanity's progress, and this will not significantly change. Biotic is pioneering a promising technology to commoditise biodegradable plastic materials for a span of most relevant present and future applications. TenNine's community invests in societal missions. Eliminating plastic waste certainly qualifies as one."

Claire Pribula, Managing Director. The Yield Lab Asia Pacific, also comments:

"Biotic's mission is to reach a zero-plastic future.  With its unique fermentation innovation based on easily grown seaweed, it not only produces completely biodegradable and compostable plastic substitutes, but by ocean farming seaweed, precious arable land may be freed to be used for nutritional food crop production purposes. This is sustainable agriculture at its finest", says Claire Pribula, Managing Director of The Yield Lab Asia Pacific. "For the packing and food industry, it is important that any plastic replacement easily fit within their own production process, Biotic's innovation does this while being completely biodegradable and leaving no chemicals in the soil. 400M tons of plastic enter our global waste system annually with 11M tons flowing into our Oceans, and if we do nothing, this could triple by 2040. We salute the founders Adi Goldman and Eran Perlstein and their team as they work to achieve Biotic's vision."

The AgriFood fund is Rockstart's first fund launched in 2019. Rockstart AgriFood has 41 portfolio companies to date, with 37 investments in 2022 alone making Rockstart one of the most active AgriFood investors in the world. The Rockstart AgriFood portfolio companies have collectively raised more than €40m in total thus far.

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