- The World Economic Forum announced its selection of the 100 most promising Technology Pioneers of 2021 – companies that are shaping industries from healthcare to retail and many more.
- This year’s cohort includes representation from 26 economies on six continents with reach far beyond traditional tech hubs like Silicon Valley.
- Polymateria, which produces plastics that self-destructs in the natural environment, made it to the selection for its contributions in the field of circular design and prevention of plastic pollution.
- The full list of Technology Pioneers can be viewed at http://wef.ch/techpioneers21.
LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#techpioneers21–Polymateria, the London-based British tech company that last year produced the world’s first fully recyclable and biodegradable plastic, was selected among hundreds of candidates as one of the World Economic Forum’s “Technology Pioneers”. Polymateria came through Imperial College London’s incubator system and counts a diverse portfolio of customers and partners from Indorama Ventures, to Hollywood Actress Robin Wright, purposeful auto racing Extreme E, Rolling Loud Festivals, DAZN Sports TV network and the Indian Government.
The World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers are early to growth-stage companies from around the world that are involved in the use of new technologies and innovation that are poised to have a significant impact on business and society.
With their selection as Technology Pioneer, CEO Niall Dunne of Polymateria will be invited to participate at World Economic Forum activities, events and discussions throughout the year. Polymateria will also contribute to Forum initiatives over the next two years, working with global leaders to help address key industry and societal issues.
“We’re excited to welcome Polymateria to our 2021 cohort of Technology Pioneers,” says Susan Nesbitt, Head of the Global Innovators Community, World Economic Forum. “Polymateria and its fellow pioneers are developing technologies that can help society solve some of its most pressing issues. We look forward to their contribution to the World Economic Forum in its commitment to improving the state of the world.”
“It’s great to be acknowledged as a tech pioneer by the World Economic Forum”, said Polymateria’s CEO, Niall Dunne. “Since we were founded we’ve been obsessed with the scientific credibility and scale needed to solve the fugitive plastic crisis. This obsession has yielded a number of science based break throughs supported by & validated through new world leading standards specifically for the materials that are most likely to wind up in nature. It’s also clear that the ultimate beach head for innovation in this area is working with the next generation of consumers to empower them to champion the change needed from industry and other stakeholders and this will be our top priority in working within the WEF community.”
For the first time in the community’s history, over 30% of the cohort are led by women. The firms also come from regions all around the world, extending their community far beyond Silicon Valley. This year’s cohort includes start-ups from 26 countries, with UAE, El Salvador, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe represented for the first time.
The diversity of these companies extends to their innovations as well. 2021 Tech Pioneer firms are shaping the future by advancing technologies such as AI, IoT, robotics, blockchain, biotechnology and many more. The full list of Technology Pioneers can be found here.
Technology Pioneers have been selected based on the community’s selection criteria, which includes innovation, impact and leadership as well as the company’s relevance with the World Economic Forum’s Platforms.
All info on this year’s Technology Pioneers can be found here: http://wef.ch/techpioneers21
More information on past winners, information on the community and the application link can be found here.
Polymateria’s mission is to advance science to help nature deal with the plastic pollution crisis. Born from, and now based at, Imperial College London, they are the first company in the world to prove scientifically that you can take the most likely sources of fugitive or littered plastics and return them to nature without creating microplastics, harming the natural environment or interfering with recycling streams at scale.
The British Standards Institutions’s new BSI PAS 9017 standard ensures claims of biodegradability in the open environment can be properly verified for the first time according to independent pass/fail criteria. The Standard and Polymateria’s technology were recently featured in National Geographic magazine: https://www.nationalgeographic.co.uk/environment-and-conservation/2020/11/new-self-destructing-plastic-has-helped-define-a-new-british
Polymateria has partnership with some of the biggest technical partners in the world such as Clariant (now Avient, see https://www.clariant.com/en/Corporate/News/2019/10/Clariant-and-Polymateria-launch-partnership-to-bring-new-Biotransformation-technology-to-market-in-S) and Indorama Ventures for non-woven applications (see https://www.innovationintextiles.com/indorama-companies-prepare-for-biotransformation/). Additionally the UK Govt included them as part of new trade with India (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/prime-minister-announces-1-billion-of-new-uk-india-trade).
In its most recent collaboration, Polymateria will be providing Extreme E, an all-electric off-road racing series, with plastic cups and flexible film that in the unlikely event of escaping into the natural environment will safely and quickly biodegrade leaving no toxins and microplastics behind: https://www.extreme-e.com/en/news/214_Extreme-E-joins-forces-with-Polymateria-to-tackle-global-plastic-pollution.html
Pour Les Femmes, the ethical brand founded by actor/activitist Robin Wright and designer Karen Fowler, is the first apparel brand to introduce Polyamteria’s technology into its packaging: https://pourlesfemmes.com/blogs/pillowtalk/whats-the-future-of-plastic-waste-robin-wright-niall-dunne
The company is proud to be a founding signatory of HRH The Prince of Wales’ Terra Carta (Earth Charter) established under the Sustainable Markets Initiative.
About World Economic Forum:
The World Economic Forum, committed to improving the state of the world, is the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation. The Forum engages the foremost political, business and other leaders of society to shape global, regional and industry agendas. (www.weforum.org).
About the Technology Pioneers:
The World Economic Forum believes that innovation is critical to the future well-being of society and to driving economic growth. Launched in 2000, the Technology Pioneer community is composed of early to growth-stage companies from around the world that are involved in the design, development and deployment of new technologies and innovations, and are poised to have a significant impact on business and society.
The World Economic Forum provides the Technology Pioneers community with a platform to engage with the public- and private-sector leaders and to contribute new solutions to overcome the current crisis and build future resiliency.
Niall Dunne, CEO