Oxford Capital Partners, the Oxford based venture capital firm focused on science and technology companies, has announced its investment in Inetec Limited as part of its focus on the sustainability engineering sector.
Inetec Limited is a developer of waste-to-renewable-energy projects in the industrial food manufacturing sector. The £2.5m investment round was led by Oxford Capital Partners and supported by the existing investors, Finance Wales and Foursome Investments.
Inetec uses its proprietary technology to convert industrial food waste into a stable biofuel. This biofuel can then be converted into gas and combusted in a combined heat and power plant (CHP) to produce heat for industry and renewable electricity for the grid. Each CHP will generate four revenue streams including a gate fee for waste collection, the sale of heat energy to industry, the sale of renewable electricity to the grid and the sale of marketable Renewable Obligation Certificates (ROCs).
Inetec benefits from the further advantage that its patented technology is the only commercially available solution able to treat all types of food waste without the need for pre-treatment, packaging removal or adjustment of the machine.
The combination of rising landfill costs and increasing legislative pressure to develop sustainable waste disposal methods and renewable energy has created a significant market opportunity for Inetec, whose solutions address both of these challenges.
It is estimated that the market for the treatment of food waste from the UK food manufacturing industry amounts to £240m and Inetec have already made significant inroads into the sector attracting a number of high profile food manufacturers as customers. Among its customers are companies that produce anything from 10 to 200 tonnes of food waste each day, almost all of which currently goes into landfill sites. For such companies Inetec’s technology presents a cost effective and environmentally responsible solution to what is becoming an ever increasing problem.
David Mott, Director of Oxford Capital Partners, states ‘Our investment in Inetec is part of our focus on the sustainability engineering sector. The technology has clear advantages in the processing of food waste over existing technologies such as composting or rendering which have been popular with investors in recent years. We look forward to helping Inetec get its first waste-to-renewable-energy project operational’
According to Phil Nicholas, Chief Executive Officer of Inetec, ‘Inetec required a significant round of new investment following recent contract wins, and to support an ambitious development programme. We were delighted to secure a significant part of that investment from Oxford Capital Partners. Oxford Capital Partners demonstrated an excellent understanding of our business and our particular structure of planned development. This ‘feeling’ for our business, combined with broad ranging technical and commercial experience, is confidently expected to add great value to our management over the next few years.’
“I would also like to acknowledge the substantial commitment of Finance Wales who have followed early stage investment with a substantial follow-on commitment.”(Finance Wales was created by the Welsh Assembly Government to provide commercial funding to Welsh businesses).
James Thomas of ICON Corporate Finance who coordinated the transaction for Inetec added: “The company’s strong management team and their solid execution of their strategy contributed to making this a very competitive and ultimately successful funding round. The deal took less than 3 months to complete from start to finish and we look forward to supporting the company as it continues to develop and grow”.