Lixea recives €2 million to scale up production at LignoCity

Lixea, a London-based startup company, has a unique process that distinguishes cellulose and lignin from biomass. The company has now been granted €2 million from the EU to scale up the production at LignoCity’s premises in Bäckhammar, Sweden.

Lixea has developed a patented process that, with the help of new, cheap, and environmentally friendly solvents, so-called ionic liquids, converts wood waste, grass, or agricultural residues into high-quality components. These can then be used as building blocks for environmentally sustainable chemicals, materials, and fuels. Thanks to the new financial addition, the innovation can be further developed.

Important milestone for the biorefinery industry

The funding, which has been granted by the European Innovation Council Fund (EIC Fund), will strengthen the facility’s continued operation, and support the development of Lixea’s pilot plant. The money will, among other things, go to optimizing the processes and refining the products. The investment complements the previous EIC grant of €2.3 million as part of the European Commission’s support to scale and commercialise the Lixea technology.

“This is a significant milestone not only for Lixea, but for the biorefining industry as a whole. We feel that we are approaching a breakthrough as sustainability beyond just carbon emissions is becoming an increasing concern and other alternatives to fossil-based materials need to be developed. The endorsement of the EIC brings additional credibility to Lixea as a technology innovator as well as a welcome support for our company’s vision”, says Krisztina Kovacs-Schreiner, CEO of Lixea.

The right place for development

This year construction begins on Lixea’s pilot plant, strategically located at the test bed LignoCity’s premises next to Nordic Paper’s paper mill in Bäckhammar, Sweden.

LignoCity is a testbed run by RISE (Research Institutes of Sweden), working to commercialise sustainable processes and products with the material lignin. This gives Lixea great conditions to a successful scale up, thanks to proximity of knowledge, a large network of contacts, and availability of raw materials.

“The fact that Lixea is establishing its pilot production at LignoCity proves that the job of making our opportunities visible has succeeded. With Lixea’s establishment, we hope that even more people will notice LignoCity and start their journey here. It is really satisfying to follow an idea that grows and scales up”, says Maria Ölmhult, project manager at LignoCity.

About the European Innovation Council Fund (EIC Fund):

The EIC Fund was established in June 2020. It provides long-term capital and invests in companies from all sectors, in all EU countries and countries associated with Horizon 2020.

The EIC fund aims to fill a critical financing gap and its main purpose is not to maximize the return on financial investments, but to have a major impact by accompanying the company during its growth. Its goal is to find additional co-investors and share the risks by building a large network of capital providers and strategic partners that are suitable for co-investment and follow-on financing.