Funding Boost For Packaging Innovator

packaging 27 August 2013

An innovative Herefordshire company that has developed a new packaging production system has received funding of £60,000 from Midven’s Early Advantage Fund, in order to support its development and marketing. The move follows an initial investment by the Minerva Business Angel Network.

The system, which uses 90% less energy than conventional packaging processes, is the brain child of inventor Martin McKenna who has worked with Charles Smith, Managing Director of Interpac Limited of Norton Wood, Herefordshire in order to exploit the commercial potential of his invention.

The Interpac system is a revolutionary process that enables on-demand production which significantly reduces packaging costs and emits 90% less greenhouse gases than conventional processes.  The funding, by the Early Advantage Fund – which targets high growth start-up and early stage businesses – will enable the further development of working prototypes.  Interpac has also teamed up with Warwick University to research and test improved chemical formulation of adhesives.

Mr Smith, who has an Honours degree in printing and packaging technology, said this was an exciting opportunity to bring new thinking to the packaging sector.

“We have teamed up with experts in the sector, each of whom brings specialist knowledge including manufacturing, sales and marketing and design.

“The packaging sector in the UK is substantial and continues to grow, driven in part by on-line purchasing.  At the same time, there are huge pressures in terms of reducing costs, improving efficiency and minimising environmental impact.  Our system, which has been in development since 2009, is already attracting significant interest,” said Mr Smith.

Duncan Kerr, Investment Director at Midven, said the business was based on an innovative and pioneering idea that it had developed and executed well.

“This is a hugely exciting proposition and one that has the potential to revolutionise the sector.  It’s a great example of how a West Midlands-based business is pioneering new technology.”

Midven works closely with the management teams in its portfolio companies to ensure their growth strategy is aligned with achieving high value returns.

Tom Blount, of Minerva Business Angel Network, based at the University of Warwick Science Park, said: “We’re thrilled to help a business introducing such innovation into the manufacturing sector. We’re particularly pleased as this is one of the first investments to be made out of our new investor group at Malvern Hills Science Park.”