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12 Mar 2024

Sonichem recently raised £1.2 million to help achieve their aim of transforming sawdust into sustainable chemicals

Sonichem recently raised £1.2 million to help achieve their aim of transforming sawdust into sustainable chemicals

Sonichem is a company based in the East Midlands and their work focuses on converting by-products, like sawdust, into renewable biochemicals. In order to make this goal feasible, they recently held a funding round, which resulted in £1.2 million being raised.

The sawdust that they use as feedstock, is produced in vast amounts in sawmills and the company gathers it from various locations. The benefits of utilising saw dust, is that it can be effectively broken down and repurposed.

Sonichem’s Melton Mowbray-based firm has said that they are able to manufacture £8 worth of bio-based sustainable chemicals, for every £1 worth of sawdust they have. Furthermore, they have stated that the production of these chemicals will make it possible to reduce the requirement for petroleum-sourced chemicals.

Once the funding round was completed, the process also involved a follow-on investment from ACF Investors.

Sonichem’s history revolves around a constant interest in reducing the use and reliance on petrochemicals, whilst also working towards the idea of sustainability. The company was founded in 2010, when they were known as Bio-Sep and they originally started looking at options for replacing the reliance industrial companies had on petrochemicals. This was their primary focus, due to the damage these chemicals cause to the environment, through contributing significantly to global carbon emissions. In 2023, the company rebranded and refocused its purpose onto sustainability contributions. This led to their current focus of developing alternative biochemicals that can be put to use in industries like cosmetics, materials and pharmaceuticals.

CEO of Sonichem, Adrian Black, commented, “At Sonichem, our mission is to make the chemical industry more sustainable.” He added that, ‘now additional funds have been secured, the company will look to enter the “next stage of commercial development,” explore options to raise Series A funding and develop its biorefinery plant in the north of the UK.

ACF Investors managing partner, Tim Mills, mentioned, “The market for sustainable bio-based chemicals has evolved rapidly in the last few years. Driving this growth is global demand to transition supply chains to robust and cost-viable sources of supply, which utilise clean technological solutions that reduce our reliance on non-sustainable hydrocarbon reserves. Sonichem’s technology forms an essential part of the global transition story and we are delighted to be a part of their remarkable journey.”

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