A fledgling bioplastics company has raised capital for growth and obtained a listing on the TSX Venture stock exchange.
Solegear Bioplastics Technologies Inc. said March 31 that it completed a C$4.2 million (US$3.36 million) financing round. Spokeswoman Elisha McCallum said the funds were raised through the sale of equity to undisclosed financial investors.
Solegear has been developing polylactic acid-based bioplastics modified with what it terms as green additives to improve properties. McCallum stated in an email correspondence that the Vancouver, British Columbia-based company is in commercial production, having passed the 10,000-pound delivery milestone last October. She said Solegear is “expecting 2015 to be a year of significant growth.” She did not disclose where the bioplastics are being made.
Solegear is working with three U.S. companies to produce and sell its polymers and packaging made from them. One of its partners is R-pac International Corp. of New York, which offers thermoforming services, prototyping and supply chain management. Another is Thermoform Engineered Quality LLC, a thermoformer in Huntley, Ill. The other is Ex-Tech Plastics Inc., a sheet extruder in Richmond, Ill.
Solegear CEO Toby Reid stated in a news release that his firm is “enthusiastic about the opportunities that lie ahead of us, and the significant expansion that we are aiming for as a result.”
Solegear's main offerings are Polysole, a recyclable and compostable material made from renewable resources. It also supplies Traverse, a recyclable bioplastic for demanding applications in rigid consumer packaging and durable goods. It estimates the market opportunities for such plastics are as high as $35 billion.
Solegear was listed on the TSX Venture exchange on March 31. As of morning trading on April 1, the stock had traded as low as C$0.255 (US$0.204) and as high as C$0.30 (US$0.24).
One shareholder is Kin Communications Inc., a Vancouver investor relations firm. Kin and its principals own 580,000 common shares and 290,000 warrants. Kin has an option to buy 500,000 common shares of Solegear at C$0.30 per share, exercisable for five years. Solegear will pay Kin C$120,000 plus tax for an initial term of a year for investor services.
Solegear obtained its exchange listing through a reverse takeover of Rodeo Capital III Corp., a capital pool company that was listed on the TSX Venture exchange. Solegear announced its plan for the deal late last year.
Solegear's technology development partly stems from work it did with the National Research Council of Canada in Ottawa beginning in 2012.