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Investors invest NOK 190 million in four entrepreneurial companies for Proventia – two with recent breakthroughs from Herøya

Sverre Gotaas (right), chairman at Proventia and CEO at Herøya Industripark AS, and general manager Jørn Roar Bamle at industrial incubator Proventia.

Funzionano, Nordic Blue Crude, NyBy and MSG Production are investors’ favourite entrepreneurial companies on the list linked with incubator environment Proventia at Herøya.

Sverre Gotaas (right), chairman at Proventia and CEO at Herøya Industripark AS, the biggest owner of Proventia, praises general manager Jørn Roar Bamle and the incubator environment for their efforts in assisting these companies with bringing in additional capital.

“For every public Norwegian krone brought in by Proventia companies, they have brought in twice as much from private investors together with the incubator network. We have no fund, or big bags of money that we can dip into, so this is a good rating when it comes to bringing in money,” enthuses Gotaas.

Greater interest

Jørn Roar Bamle explains that there is now greater interest in Proventia as a co-investor.

For every public Norwegian krone brought in by Proventia companies, they have brought in twice as much from private investors together with the incubator network.

“We are noticing that our environment has become more attractive to start-up companies, and this has been particularly apparent since we received pre-seed funding in 2017. This helped with further development of our investment profile and expertise,” says Bamle. “We are now receiving enquiries from entrepreneurial companies even outside our region that are ready to take on investors. Although our pre-seed funding has been invested, we are considering co-investing some of our own funds in incubator companies, particularly if this will help to trigger private capital in the longer term,” he says.

Investors are investing a total of NOK 190 million in these four companies, all of which are developing solutions for a more sustainable society. Funzionano is creating a solution that will make PVC more sustainable, Nordic Blue Crude is planning the construction of an e-fuel factory, MSG Production has developed a multi-solution for cleaning and inspection of aircraft, and NyBy has developed an IT solution that links resources and needs in society. 

Two recent breakthroughs 

Funzionano and Nordic Blue Crude, both of which are linked with the Herøya pilot arena, recently reported new breakthroughs.

photo of management at Nordic Blue Crude to the left and two empolyees at Funzionano to the right

Chairman Rolf Bruknapp (left) and general manager Gunnar Holen, Nordic Blue Crude. Pictured on the right are pilot manager Tonje Haagensen and business development manager Petter Pettersen of Funzionano.

Funzionano launched its first product manufactured at its pilot plant at Herøya Research Park and entered into an investment agreement with Kongsberg Innovasjon, says the innovation company on its website (Norwegian). 

Nordic Blue Crude secured funding up to the start of construction of the “E-Fuel 1” factory at Herøya, according to the Proventia website. 

MSG Production and NyBy are developing their companies from Skien and Oslo.

80/20

These four companies are responsible for more than 80 per centre of capital obtained from private investors for 18 of Proventia’s entrepreneurial companies, collecting a total of NOK 233 million between 2015 and 2019.

Building a competence ecosystem around entrepreneurs is something that I consider to be extremely important.

These four companies all stand out from the crowd in that they have all collected more than NOK 10 million. Nordic Blue Crude and MSG Production top the list, with a total of NOK 145 million.

Public funding worth NOK 121 million has been injected into the incubator companies over the same period.

Important ecosystem for entrepreneurs

Gotaas and Bamle are of the opinion that HIP and Proventia are a fantastic combination and provide an important ecosystem for entrepreneurs.

“Building a competence ecosystem around entrepreneurs is something that I consider to be extremely important,” says Gotaas. “We need a raft of new companies that try new things, and that is why having incubator services of this kind here is becoming more and more important.”

Factory could be constructed

“We have space and plenty of equipment here at the industrial park, and Proventia has the skills when it comes to coming up with ideas and helping companies. We can provide laboratories or pilot facilities, and this could result in someone setting up here and eventually constructing a factory,” says Gotaas with a big grin.

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