Today, Transcend Packaging, a sustainable packaging company, completed a combined equity and debt investment round of £10 million. The cornerstone of the equity round was based on an investment from London based IW Capital, a private equity firm focused on high growth, small and medium sized enterprises.
The investment will allow Transcend to further its mission to rid the world of single-use plastics. Over the past two years, Transcend has established itself as Europe’s leading producer of paper straws, and recently launched the first of its kind, home-compostable, CE certified PPE. Transcend, which counts McDonald’s as a client, is focused upon creating fully compostable, paper and fibre-based alternatives to plastic packaging using state of the art digital printing techniques and speciality paper coatings. This allows it to create products with the same performance as plastics without compromising sustainability.
Recognised as an ‘Economic Disruptor of The Year’ by The Spectator, Transcend Packaging began production from its plant in South Wales in 2018 after its founders were inspired by David Attenborough’s Blue Planet.
Gabriel Fysh, Transcend Packaging Co-Founder and Director said: “We’re delighted to be backed by IW Capital as we focus our efforts on becoming a global leader in sustainable packaging. With the current focus on sustainable packaging, shifting away from plastic and the importance of domestic supply chains in a post COVID/Brexit world, Transcend is well positioned to take advantage of this well timed investment from IW Capital, existing shareholders and our strategic partners.”
Luke Davis, CEO of IW Capital, said: “We are thrilled to have led such a significant round of investment in Transcend as it provides the disruption the packaging industry was calling out for. Whether it is for food service business, groceries or the PPE market, Transcend is excellently placed to help organisations replace the plastics that customers don’t want to buy, and governments are making illegal.”
Changing the Packaging Landscape
Founded in late 2017, Transcend now employs over 150 people at its plant in South Wales.
Driven by huge consumer preference for fully sustainable packaging, UK and EU-wide legislation will outlaw single-use plastics such as straws from October 2020 (UK) and April 2021 (EU) – creating a ripe opportunity for Transcend to create paper replacements including the 50 billion straws used across the EU every year.
Most recently, Transcend has demonstrated agility throughout the COVID-19 crisis. After lock-down saw demand from the food service industry dry up overnight, it moved quickly to create affordable, certified protective face masks, securing contracts to supply millions of visors to the NHS Wales, elderly care centres, schools and private industry.
Conscious of the environmental impact of single-use PPE, Transcend was the first company to produce a fully home compostable face visor with a Plastic Free trust mark from A Plastic Planet.
Gabriel Fysh concluded: “Our resourcefulness and creativity in a crisis allowed us to pivot and create a world’s first plastic free PPE product in record time. This is further proof that we can use natural materials to replace plastics in more ways than people assume. All organisations are under pressure to come back greener and cleaner and every example of this presents an opportunity – whether that’s paper coffee cup lids, take away trays, cutlery or even drinks bottles. There is no longer any excuse to continue to use petroleum plastic to pollute our planet.”
“The COVID-19 crisis and the slow-down in global trade has also highlighted the need for UK and EU companies to end their reliance on imported packaging from China and to seek safe, certified products produced here in the UK.”