Quest for Growth invests 1.9 million euro in Qpinch
7 October 2021
Qpinch, a Belgian scale-up that supplies industrial heat pumps to the chemical, petrochemical and food industry has attracted € 10 million of growth equity from FPIM-SFPI and Capricorn Partners. Qpinch solutions have been developed to massively cut the industry’s energy bill and reduce its CO2 output significantly. At Capricorn both the Capricorn Sustainable Chemistry Fund and Quest for Growth invested the Antwerp-based scale-up. The Port of Antwerp and a large group of existing shareholders pre-seeded the capital increase with € 4 million through a pre-closing finance
Mimicking nature to make huge steps forward in industrial energy efficiency and CO2 reduction.
The revolutionary Qpinch technology imitates the natural chemical reactions that take place in all living cells in the so-called ATP/ADP cycle (in case ATP refers to adenosine triphosphate, and ADP to adenosine diphosphate). By using a chemical process to raise the temperature of waste heat, the Qpinch technology provides a heat lift for waste heat that could otherwise not be utilised. Unlike the use of conventional heat pumps, this closed-loop process minimises operational costs as well as electricity use. The technology is scalable from one to >50 megawatts (MW) and is therefore able to process enormous levels of industrial waste heat, enabling a quantum leap in energy efficiency and CO2 for large industrial processes. Since its start-up, the heat recovery demonstration unit has been testing the capabilities of the Qpinch technology with view to scaling it up for use in different industrial processes, helping its customers to reach its 2030 goals. The technology is applicable in a wide range of heavy industries: going from oil refineries, petrochemical till food & feed.
The company can show an impressive track record. SABIC Ventures, the investment arm of the SABIC petrochemical group is a strategic partner and investors since 2018. Up to date, Qpinch has delivered its first MW installations to Borealis and Kuraray (EVAL) in Antwerp, and has signed several strategic collaboration agreements with Boortmalt, the largest group of malteries in the world and Chiyoda Corporation, a large engineering and construction company, to commercialize the Technology in Japan.
With € 14 million of fresh equity, Qpinch will be able to strengthen its commercial team, enlarge its engineering capacity and serve new markets
“After ten years of technology development, Qpinch reached successful completion of its first industrial MW scale installations. This new product is a key-milestone and reference for a large global roll out to enable our customers realizing their 2030 CO2 objectives.” Says Wouter Ducheyne Co-CEO and CTO Qpinch
“With strong partners as Capricorn and FPIM we will accelerate the further development of the company and commercialization. As climate neutrality of the industry becomes more critical by the day, we will have to deliver fast, large and reliable installations globally. This path forward pushes us, as technology license company, to partner up with customers, strategic suppliers, engineering- & construction companies.” States Christian Heeren Co-CEO and CCO Qpinch
Ludwig Goris, Senior Investment Manager at Capricorn states “In our view, Qpinch has developed a technology that for the first time in history provides for a true solution to save energy and carbon emissions at large industrial scale. We are delighted that the chemical heat pump that Wouter Ducheyne and Chris Stevens from Ghent University have developed is now being deployed across the chemical, petro-chemical and food industry. In times where all climate alarm bells are going off, we look forward to support the company in its international growth ambitions and at the same time contribute to the transformation of the chemical industry to carbon neutrality”.
Leon Cappaert, Investment Manager at FPIM-SFPI says “We strongly believe that the first wave of investments to realize the EU’s climate goals should favor energy efficiency technologies. Today this is the most efficient and profitable segment with an immediate environmental and social benefit. Qpinch’s technology is a great example of this : by reusing industrial process heat it not only reduces energy consumption but also contributes significantly to CO2 reductions. We believe Qpinch’s technology will be help safeguard and improve the competitive position of the chemical cluster in Antwerp. FPIM is proud to be part of the exciting growth story that lies ahead."