SAO PAULO, Feb. 20, 2018 (PPI Latin America) -Brazilian pulp and packaging paper producer Klabin has acquired for $2.5 million a 12.5% share in the Israeli startup Melodea Bio Based Solutions, a pioneer in the technology for extracting cellulose nanocrystalline (CNC).
Klabin stated that the deal will strengthen its efforts in the areas of research, development and innovation, using CNC's applications to make stronger paper and packaging, 100% recyclable and that can leverage new business opportunities for forestry products.
"Melodea has excellent capacity for developing the CNC technologies, with applications in several industries. Given its high crystalline properties and capacity to form dense and highly cohesive films, CNC is an innovative route for renewable and sustainable barriers for paper and packaging that ensure greater resistance to air, water, vapors and oil, etc., while using a more environmental friendly technology," stated Klabin's director for technology and pulp business, Francisco Razzolini.
In a presentation to investors on Dec. 1, Klabin's CEO Cristiano Teixeira anticipated that the company was trying to better understand the future of paper consumption and respond to the new demand of clients. "The millennial consumers are much more connected with trends and the unboxing experience, so we are actively studying ways to improve their experience with packaging. Meanwhile, we already know how much these customers are demanding more biodegradable products, which is totally aligned with our businesses."
Razzolini added that Klabin also aims to develop new applications for lignin besides energy production, including carbon fiber. The firm is also studying micro fibrillated pulp and has already concluded three industrial tests using the technology, which enhanced paper quality. The idea is to incorporate it in the company's papers from 2019.
In the past three years, Klabin has invested Real 70 million in completing and integrating its research and development in the areas of forestry and industry, providing a broad and unified view of the topic. The company launched in June a technology center in Telêmaco Borba, southern Brazil, aiming to anticipate trends and to develop new sustainable technologies and applications.