The consumer goods group Beiersdorf and the chemical firm BASF are investing in the chemical recycling of polyester waste by the Swiss startup DePoly SA. DePoly’s CEO and co-founder Samantha Anderson intends to commission a demonstration plant in Switzerland by 2024.
Founded in 2020, DePoly has developed a chemical recycling technology that converts mixed post-consumer and post-industrial polyester plastic waste streams, as well as polyester-containing fabrics and fibres, back into their precursors, PTA and MEG, at virgin-grade quality. The parties agreed not to disclose the financial details.
Beiersdorf is making the investment in the Swiss start-up through Oscar&Paul Venture Capital Unit, while BASF will do so via BASF Venture Capital GmbH. DePoly, which uses a recycling technology that converts PET at room temperature and standard pressure, had conducted a €12.6m seed financing round together with Wingman Ventures, with participation from Infinity Recycling, Ciech Ventures, Züricher Kantonalbank and others. DePoly said that the seed funding would allow it to scale up and develop its depolymerisation process and build a demonstration plant.
Jan Willem Muller, Managing Partner at Infinity Recycling, remarked, “We believe that DePoly has the team and the drive to bring their groundbreaking innovation for polyester recycling to market.”
“The process developed by DePoly can be used to produce advanced packaging materials for the cosmetics industry and the requirements that are specific to that industry,” commented Michael Becker, Vice President of Global Packaging Development of R&D at Beiersdorf. “We strongly believe in the potential of the DePoly technology as it bridges a crucial gap in circular PET usage by preserving desired quality standards effectively.”
“We are excited to support their mission to create a more sustainable future,” added Markus Solibieda, Managing Director at BASF Venture Capital.