Sergio Sosa, who won the first International Plastics Design competition at NPE 2009 with a process called Inside Injection Foaming (IIF), plans to sell the patent to a buyer willing to spend time and money on its development.
He has several potential purchasers in Europe and Latin America, he said in a telephone interview. “In the United States I'm just starting” to talk to people, he said.
In 2009 Sosa licensed the high impact-resistant technology to Fomento Económico Mexicano SAB de CV (Femsa), Latin America's largest Coca-Cola bottler, which used the process to make 500,000-plus pallets.
However, Femsa, of Monterrey, Mexico, has not expressed an interest in developing either the IIF pallet or a later model called the Pliable Plastic Pallet (PPP), whose patent Sosa also plans to sell, according to Sosa.
“[The] high durability of this [IIF] pallet is not a big advantage for companies that have high rates of pallet loss and theft,” he said in an email, adding that the idea behind PPP is “to provide a longer life than a traditional plastic pallet but at a lower price, [one] approaching the price of a wooden pallet.”
In 2014, Sosa's PPP won a prize for innovation in a competition run by the McAllen Chamber of Commerce in Texas, where Sosa lives. He has dual Mexican and U.S. citizenship.
“My goal is to sell [the patents] to people willing to use and develop” the technology, he said. According to Sosa, who has been undergoing treatment for kidney cancer since April 2015, wooden pallets account for 93 percent of the global pallet market.
He is the son of a plastics industry pioneer in Mexico and a former president of Mexico's plastics industry association Anipac (Asociación Nacional de Industrias del Plástico AC).