São Paulo, February 7, 2018 – Further advancing its innovation strategy, Klabin announces the acquisition of a 12.5% interest in the Israeli startup Melodea Bio Based Solutions, a pioneer in the technology for extracting cellulose nanocrystalline (CNC), a 100% biobased and renewable product. The investment of US$2.5 million will strengthen Klabin’s efforts in the areas of Research, Development & Innovation, which is focused on developing bioeconomical solutions for the responsible, efficient and sustainable use of natural resources.
Klabin’s goal is to use cellulose nanocrystalline applications to make stronger paper and packaging, 100% recyclable and that can leverage new business opportunities for forestry products. “Melodea’s has excellent capacity for developing the CNC technologies, with applications in several industries. Given its high crystalline properties and capacity to form dense and highly cohesive films, CNC is an innovative route for renewable and sustainable barriers for paper and packaging that ensure greater resistance to air, water, vapors and oil, etc., while using a more environmental friendly technology”, says Francisco Razzolini, Klabin’s Director for Technology and Pulp Business. The project will enable Klabin to further enhance its research, support the performance of its business lines and drive innovation in its forestry base, in ways that are economically viable and environmentally responsible.
The strategy of this promising partnership, which is based on the fundamentals of Klabin’s operating efficiency and Sustainability Policy, takes advantage of synergies with Melodea’s focus on meeting global demand for innovative materials that substitute fossil-based products. “We have remarkable synergy with Klabin’s commitment to innovation and sustainable development and look forward to leveraging their leadership reputation and marketplace resources to advance a next generation of safe and renewable industrial CNC products”, says Dr. Shaul Lapidot, CEO of Melodea Ltd.
The deal represents yet another investment by Klabin in its Research Development & Innovation. In the past three years, the company has invested R$70 million in completing and integrating its research and development in the areas of forestry and industry, providing a broad and unified view of the topic. In June 2017, Klabin inaugurated its Technology Center in Telêmaco Borba, Paraná, which works to anticipate trends and to develop new sustainable technologies and applications with laboratories capable of producing a wide array of forestry products and to conduct simulations of the mill’s production facilities. The center seeks to anticipate trends and to develop new sustainable technologies and applications.