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Secure backing for Bcomp’s next stage

Technologies are being used by automotive companies as substitutes for standard materials like carbon, glass or plastic.

16th April 2024

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Switzerland


Bcomp, the Swiss-headquartered manufacturer of natural fibre composites which is listed as a Top 100 Global Cleantech Company, has completed a CHF 36 million (US$40 million) Series C investment funding round.

The round was led by EGS Beteiligungen AG (EGSB), a major Swiss institutional investor focused on growth-stage companies. Verve Ventures, Zürcher Kantonalbank and RKKVC are additional new investors.

The funding round also saw a group of Series A and Series B participants deepen their investment in Bcomp, including Generali and Airbus Ventures, in addition to strategic investment funds associated with high-profile automotive OEMs.

“The success of this funding round speaks to the belief of investors in our high-performance decarbonisation solutions,” said Bcomp shairman Christian Jaag. “This investment will expand our existing markets as well as propel our growth into exciting new sectors.”

The funding will help Bcomp scale its production capacity to convert an advanced pipeline of commercial opportunities in industrial automotive and support its entry into new markets in Asia and North America.

Already seeing industrial-scale applications of its at Volvo and Polestar, the company will also build on its leadership position in the bio-composite market by introducing lightweighting and sustainable solutions for additional verticals that include rail, buses, aviation, aerospace and consumer goods.

Bcomp’s patented range of flax-based reinforcement fabrics – powerRibs and ampliTex – are pioneering technologies that can be used by OEMs as substitutes for standard materials like carbon, glass or plastic in its target markets. In specific applications, powerRibs and the ampliTex technical fabric ranges offer superior lightweighting and stiffness potential relative to synthetic composites.

The materials also offer distinct advantages including high-vibration damping and enhanced safety as they do not shatter on impact. By adopting these sustainable solutions and achieving dematerialisation through reduced material usage, it’s possible to significantly decrease CO2 emissions across the entire lifecycle of products, from production through to end-of-life.

“We are very impressed by the maturity and leadership of such a young Swiss company in the field of sustainable, lightweight performance materials,” said David Kurmann, investment director at EGSB. “It is offering unprecedented solutions to decarbonisation at a time when the global manufacturing sector is trying to meet its carbon-neutral objectives.”

Originally developed to lighten and reinforce backcountry skis, Bcomp’s bio-based composites have been adapted and field-tested in motorsports to deliver performance benefits and positive sustainable impacts. OEMs associated with investors like BMW i Ventures, Porsche Ventures and Volvo Cars Tech Fund are already using powerRibs and ampliTex. For example, AmpliTex, for example, is being applied at volume for visible interior components in the new electric Volvo EX30, while BMW is using both products in the design of performance interior and exterior parts for its BMW M4 GT4.

The company’s materials contribute significantly to decarbonisation by allowing, a reduction in plastic content by up to 70% and total weight savings of up to 50% compared with traditional materials and techniques. The use of these natural, high-performance materials can also reduce the quantity of CO2 emitted from cradle to gate by up to 60% and parts can be recycled and repurposed to serve a second life in another set of components.

“Not only are we facing more stringent regulations for carbon outputs, but consumers and manufacturers everywhere understand that we need to decarbonise to preserve our global environment,” said Bcomp CEO and Co-Founder Christian Fischer. “The quality and status of investors in our Series C clearly demonstrates their belief that our bio-based composites offer a viable path towards carbon neutrality without compromising the rigorous performance requirements of our customers for their demanding applications.”

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