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  • By: Rosalind Moran
  • Graphene Flagship
  • Publishing date: 24 May 2023
  • By: Rosalind Moran
  • Graphene Flagship
  • Publishing date: 24 May 2023

Carbon Waters raises 2 million euros to industrialise unique graphene production process

Graphene Flagship Associated Member Carbon Waters is ramping up its industrial production with a new pilot factory

The French start-up Carbon Waters, a Graphene Flagship Associated Member specialising in the development and production of lines of high-performance industrial additives, has announced that it has raised 2 million euros.

This funding marks a milestone in the start-up’s development, as it will enable Carbon Waters to industrialise its graphene-based high-performance additives production process.

Specifically, Carbon Waters will use the investment to advance from prototyping to the preindustrial process. The funding will initially finance a pilot factory, whose goal is to be the standard-bearer in ultra-low resource consumption in its processes.

The new building, which will measure approximately 1200 m2, is expected to be constructed over the next few months in metropolitan Bordeaux. The company is also implementing a sizeable hiring plan to support its development, creating a dozen skilled jobs.

Carbon Waters currently produces 500 kilos of graphene dispersion, and the performance of its additives has been validated by numerous firms representing multiple industrial sectors. The start-up aims to increase its production tenfold next year, with a goal of producing 50 to 100 tons of graphene dispersion by late 2025. Achieving this ramp-up will require a larger-capacity factory and a larger business team – and this new industrial horizon will mean another round of fundraising.

The start-up has two main markets in its sights: paints, which account for potentially €2 billion, and polymers, which could exceed €4 billion. Carbon Waters is sealing multiple technological, industrial, and commercial partnership deals with the leaders in these sectors in order to turbocharge market penetration in France and internationally.

For this particular funding round, funds came from Aquiti Gestion and NACO (Nouvelle-Aquitaine Co-investissement) – which are longtime shareholders – and the Tirésias Angels and Paris Business Angels investment funds, along with several other business angels. Carbon Waters also received financial support from Bpifrance.

Achieving this funding milestone is a testament to the great potential of the start-up’s focus on graphene, whose unique properties could render the nanomaterial useful in developing products offering a wide range of functions. Indeed, graphene has been known for its mechanical and thermal resistance and electrical and thermal conductivity for 20 years. It also offers excellent anticorrosion and preservative properties.

Alban Chesneau, CEO of Carbon Waters, spoke with enthusiasm about the start-up’s current areas of focus.

“We are currently working in three major development areas,” said Chesneau.

“Our first field of expertise is totally or partially replacing toxic products, particularly for paint manufacturers. Our second field of action involves focusing on decarbonising the industry and lightening structures for the naval, automobile, aeronautics, and space industries. Our third area of research, meanwhile, is about developing solutions for storing and transporting hydrogen, and extending the useful life of materials, such as those used in batteries.”

All three areas have the potential to substantially benefit industrial operations across sectors.

Graphene Flagship Head of Innovation Kari Hjelt emphasised the uniqueness of Carbon Waters’ dispersed graphene production process.

“Carbon Waters’ unique process is at the heart of its disruptive innovation,” said Hjelt.

“The process allows the start-up to provide industrialists with ‘ready to use’ product lines – and the start-up has already produced two patents, with a third one on the way.”

Indeed, Carbon Waters is already drawing attention for both its achievements and its potential. The start-up was recognised by BPI France and France Industrie as a decarbonisation start-up in the materials category and won a French Tech NA20 award, which aims to reward businesses that make a positive impact.

Learn more about the work of Carbon Waters here: www.carbon-waters.com

Author bio

Rosalind Moran
Rosalind Moran

Graphene Flagship Press and Communications Co-ordinator (University of Cambridge)