University of Central Florida (UCF) Spinout Company Receives Funding
Florida Institute Funds Garmor, Inc. through Seed Capital Accelerator Program
Gainesville and Boca Raton, FL – May 6, 2013 - The Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research (the Institute) announced today that it has finalized a funding agreement with Garmor, Inc., an advanced materials company based in Orlando, Florida that focuses on developing low-cost, low-weight and high-strength materials without sacrificing critical features such as product durability, efficiency and performance.
The Institute works with Florida’s research universities and institutions to support new company creation and job growth. The Seed Capital Accelerator Program bridges early funding gaps, requiring recipients to raise private matching investment which enables them to reach critical development milestones and get to market quicker.
Garmor has developed a cost-effective method of producing high-quality graphene, a carbon-based material similar to carbon nanotubes and fullerenes. Although graphene was discovered nearly ten years ago, attempts to commercialize the mass production of graphene have not yet achieved affordable price points for many applications. By leveraging a new manufacturing methodology, Garmor plans to initially market its graphene for use in high-volume industries. One particular industry of interest is the reinforced materials markets where graphene adds substantial material improvements. Examples where this technology will be leveraged includes thermoplastics, thermoset plastics, resins and fiberglass composites. The enhanced strength, reduced cost and ultra-lightweight features of Garmor’s graphene in graphene-reinforced materials also facilitate its use in a wide number of transportation and construction applications.
“Through sponsored research at UCF, Garmor demonstrated and proved that when used as an additive its graphene improves several material properties of composite materials. This funding, combined with our private investment, enables us to focus on volume manufacturing and customized product development,” said Anastasia Canavan, President and CEO of Garmor. “I can’t emphasize enough the importance of seed funding for companies like Garmor that are commercializing university technologies.”
“Garmor is a great example of a Florida-based company leveraging advancements in technology, in this case the discovery of graphene, to enable corporations across multiple industries to deploy better products more cost-effectively”, said Jamie Grooms, Institute CEO. “Florida universities and research institutions are making new discoveries every day, improving every aspect of how we live, work and play.”
About the Institute
Formed by the Florida Legislature in 2007, the Institute for Commercialization of Public Research is a non-profit organization that works collaboratively with the technology licensing and commercialization offices of Florida’s state universities and private research institutions to leverage a $2B+ research base and form investable companies that create clean jobs in new industries that are driving the global economy. Over 100 new company projects have been identified across the state, and in 2011 the Institute began deploying a $10M Seed Capital Accelerator Program which provides “repayable upon liquidity” loans to qualifying companies who must match the funding with private investment capital. Fifteen companies have been funded since the program’s inception.
About Garmor, Inc.
Garmor manufactures graphene and composites for applications across multiple markets that currently use fiberglass, ceramics, plastics, epoxies, and metals. Leveraging advancements in composite materials development, Garmor enables manufacturers to build stronger products that are lightweight and more cost-efficient than previously possible.
Chief Operating Officer
Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research