For founders working on discovering, developing, or recycling advanced materials. The stream will focus on businesses that are identifying novel materials, new material discovery platforms, or characterization tools for new materials.
Lios has created SoundBounce: an acoustic metamaterial that reduces noise and is made of its own responsive fluid material in a cellular-shaped skin that changes viscosity in response to sound energy. Its performance is up to 1000x greater than the current materials at low frequencies. The market spans the chemical, automotive, construction, aerospace, and home appliance industries.
Molecule Works is developing a proprietary system for on-site collection of CO2 from air. The MWI system is economical at the small scale (0.2 tons of CO2 per day); once proven at this scale the system can be used for massive climate change mitigation applications.
Krosslinker uses a proprietary fabrication process to produce a class of advanced ultralight nanomaterials, called aerogels. The primary focus is on thermal insulation applications in cold-chain transport, cold storage, energy infrastructure, industrial, automotive, and construction industry. Their first product is an aerogel board to be used in cold-chain packaging, including bio-pharma shipments.
Using their novel manufacturing process, Wootz produces aligned carbon nanotubes (CNTs). Their high-quality CNT films and fibers are as strong as Kevlar, as flexible as cotton, and nearly as thermally-conductive as diamond, which affords them applications in industries ranging from durable fishing equipment to wearable electronics.
Founded by two physicists who suffered from tinnitus as children, Lios uses advanced technology to eliminate harmful noise pollution. Lios’s product SoundBounce is an acoustic metamaterial that works better than traditional sound dampening materials. The novel material uses energy-absorbing materials never before used in the acoustics and vibration field. SoundBounce attenuates low-frequency noise in products with engines, vibrations and airflow — with the potential to transform industries such as aerospace, automotive, construction and power generation.
Lios was initially funded with €3.7 million, €2.3 million of which came as a grant from a European Commission funding program for research and innovation, and the rest of which was raised in a small early-stage round. Founders Rhona Togher and Eimear O’Carroll joined CDL-Toronto’s Matter stream virtually from Ireland. The team arrived with a long list of challenges: how to finance the company, how to manage its team and how to scale its business. CDL mentors coached Lios to refine its market — the product has a very broad market scope — into “chunks that we could bite off,” Togher said.
The most important transition Lios went through at CDL was scaling its message for investors, Togher said. The two founders were mission-driven and passionate but had to learn how to quantify the demand for their product and back that up with research. With the help of an MBA student assigned to the venture by CDL, Lios was able to “completely transform all of our materials and how we represent what we’re doing,” Togher said.
Lios is now seeking investment for a €5-million round, which it intends to use to scale its team. “Now that kind of the world is moving on from the last couple of years, people are back to business big time,” said Togher. “And we need to need to scale our team to be able to respond to the demand from our customers.”
For companies like this, it is not just product-market fit, but also the delivery of your product.
Lucy Wang • Associate, CDL-Toronto Feb 23, 2022 @ 2:56 PM ET