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Hong Kong factor as Xampla closes £6.2m seed round



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Xampla’s plastic replacement solution – currently in use in washing detergent and shampoos – is a game-changer
Xampla’s plastic replacement solution – currently in use in washing detergent and shampoos – is a game-changer

University of Cambridge spin-out Xampla has closed a £6.2m seed finance round, led by the backers of Zoom, to accelerate the roll-out of its next generation plastic replacement. The investment follows a £2m round announced in April last year.

The company’s goal is to replace microplastics and single-use plastics with its entirely natural plant-protein alternatives. To date successful products offering Xampla’s solution include laundry detergents and shampoos. Xampla is chaired by Jeff Seabright, the former chief sustainability officer of Unilever, and is the first UK university spin-out to secure B Corp accreditation.

The finance round was led by Horizons Ventures, the private investment arm of Li Ka-shing, the Hong Kong-based dealmaking tycoon who has invested in some of the world’s most innovative companies and disruptive technologies including Facebook, Zoom, Waze, Spotify, Siri, DeepMind, Improbable, and Impossible Foods.

Bart Swanson, of Horizons Ventures, said: “We invest in highly innovative companies in Asia, Europe and the US with the potential to disrupt on a global scale.

“Xampla’s excellent core science and strong commercial advantages set it apart in the race for a replacement to plastic, and we look forward to working with the team to build the business over the coming years.”

Xampla’s replacement plastic packaging, which degrades into a pea protein edible for tiny sea-borne creatures
Xampla’s replacement plastic packaging, which degrades into a pea protein edible for tiny sea-borne creatures

Xampla, which is based at the BioInnovation Building on Cambridge Science Park, was also backed by deeptech investor Amadeus Capital Partners, Cambridge Enterprise, and Sky Ocean Ventures.

Amelia Armour, partner, Amadeus Capital Partners said: “Plastic pollution is a global problem which has a viable solution in Xampla’s plant-protein alternative.

“It has been exciting to help Xampla gain traction and we welcome Horizons Ventures as an investor who shares Amadeus’ vision for this great company.”

Jeff Seabright, Xampla chair, said: “The Xampla team had a great first year, with excellent technical and commercial progress.

“We look forward to working with Horizons and our other investors to continue to build Xampla and deliver its significant commercial potential by addressing one of today’s most pressing problems – plastic pollution.”

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