Anges Quebec, Cycle Capital make history in funding Polystyrene recycling startup


Polystyvert, a Montreal-based company that recycles polystyrene, is getting $4.9 million in funding from members of Anges Québec, Anges Québec Capital, Cycle Capital Management, BDC Capital and Sustainable Development Technology Canada.

The investment from Anges Québec is one of the largest in the organization’s history. For Cycle Capital, it’s the first time the firm is investing in a woman CEO.

“It’s a groundbreaking solution that significantly reduces the economic and financial impacts of polystyrene,” said Anges Quebec member Marianne Lépinoit. “Solenne is a visionary entrepreneur with the foresight to put together a strong team of strategic partners and the open mind needed to get a project like this off the ground.”

Polystyvert

Solenne Brouard Gaillot

Polystyrene-intensive sectors such as furniture and appliance retailers, the pharmaceutical industry, and the fish business all produce mass amounts of the material, leading to problems once it comes time for disposal. Commonly known as styrofoam, the material is difficult and costly to reuse.

Polystyvert is a collection and recycling service that lets users dispose and dissolve polystyrene in a large container filled with essential oil. The company’s technology separates the essential oil and the primary material (polystyrene).

The recycled material can be reused to produce a wide range of products including food product trays, commercial packaging, wall insulation, and more. The general public can also recycle their Styrofoam at Polystyvert facilities by using drop-off points at the Granby or Waterloo municipal recycling centres.

The startup company was part of the fall 2015 cohort of Cycle Capital’s Ecofuel Accelerator, a program for cleantech startups.

Polystyvert president Solenne Brouard Gaillot said the new cash will give the company “the means to carry out the most significant expansion since its inception in 2011, scaling up equipment and facilities to meet ever-growing demand.”

“With this financing, not only can we begin acquiring the equipment we need to grow, but it also takes us one step closer to our ultimate goal of making polystyrene recycling accessible all across Quebec, Canada, and eventually the world,” she said. “The Montreal plant will be the first facility built around our innovative recycling process. It’s the first plant of its kind in the whole world!”

Cycle Capital founder Andrée-Lise Méthot told MTLinTECH that a female CEO leading the company is a strong sign in 2016.

“I think Solenne did a great job. For us it’s an early-stage deal with great potential and I will underline that it’s the first time Cycle Capital is investing in a female CEO,” said Méthot. ” This is great news to have another woman CEO in Canada. I think we need to say this. It has been generally challenging to bring a woman into the CEO role, but now with Solenne we have an example that it’s possible to succeed in this role.”

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