ReCatalyst closes oversubscribed seed financing round

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The ReCatalyst management team (left to right): Matija Gatalo, Tomaz Bizjak, and Javier Gonzalez. Photo: Y0Y Production

ReCatalyst, a spin-out from the renowned National Institute of Chemistry in Ljubljana, developing next-generation PEM fuel cell catalysts, has closed an oversubscribed €1.7 million seed financing round.

The funding round was co-led by the Germany-based High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF), xista science ventures from Austria and OCCIDENT from Germany. The syndicate completes RUJ Ventures from Slovenia and the strategic business angel Dr. Tine Tomažič.

With the humanity’s race to ‘net-zero’, hydrogen and proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells will play a critical role in decarbonisation of both the energy and transport sectors. Fuel cells technology is expected to decarbonize especially heavier applications such as heavy-duty trucks, buses, trains, airplanes, ships, etc. However, at the core of each PEM fuel cell are currently still far too high quantities of precious and scarce platinum that is found in the electrocatalyst.

This makes the technology expensive and difficult to mass produce. To solve this problem, ReCatalyst is developing a nano-tech platform for the production of next-generation of intermetallic platinum-alloy PEM fuel cell catalysts with the core mission to enable an optimized usage of platinum group metals.

“The investment from a strong syndicate of renowned international investors not only provides the company with crucial financial and operational support but also positions it on a global scale. In addition, this opportunity synergizes effectively with Slovenia’s strong connections to the German and Austrian industries. I take immense pride in the fact that we have transformed what was once a PhD research project into one of the most promising products in the market with substantial potential for future developments. While we have been successfully building our company with prestigious non-dilutive funding sources, we have now reached a stage where a more aggressive approach for growth has been absolutely critical in order to capitalize on the emerging hydrogen and catalysts market,” said Tomaž Bizjak, CEO and co-founder of ReCatalyst.

“We are really at a unique point in history to be able to make a direct impact towards an incredibly important humanity’s challenge and accelerate commercialization of hydrogen-based technologies at the very ‘heart’ – the (electro)catalyst. We plan to use this incredible opportunity to take our patented nano-tech platform to the next level, expanding both our production capabilities as well as product portfolio, revolutionizing not only the way we make fuel cell catalysts, but (electro)catalysts in general.” added Matija Gatalo, CTO and co-founder of ReCatalyst.

Jim Cornall is editor of Deeptech Digest and publisher at Ayr Coastal Media. He is an award-winning writer, editor, photographer, broadcaster, designer and author. Contact Jim here.