PITTSBURGH, December 10, 2018 via nanogriptech.com – “nanoGriptech, the first commercial manufacturer of gecko-inspired micro-structured dry adhesives and surfaces for a wide range of applications in cleanrooms, manufacturing and medical environments, and sports equipment, apparel and upholstery design, has received a $1.7 million investment to support broader commercialization activities. The financing is being provided by Industrial Technology Investment Corporation (ITIC), the venture capital arm of the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), a Taipei, Taiwan-based R&D consortium. ITRI has more than 6,000 technical experts, 24,000 alumni experts and 25,000 patents in robotics, advanced materials, biotech and more.”
“‘ITIC brings a depth of technical expertise that few investment firms can rival,’ says Nicholas Kuhn, CEO of nanoGriptech.
nanoGriptech was incorporated in 2012 by Metin Sitti while he was a professor in Carnegie Mellon University’s (CMU’s) Department of Mechanical Engineering and in the school’s Robotics Institute. Dr. Sitti earned his undergraduate degree in electrical and electronics engineering from Bogazici University in Turkey, and obtained his PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Tokyo. Following post-doctoral work at the University of California, Berkeley, he joined CMU in 2002, where he pioneered the design and manufacturing of synthetic gecko foot-hairs and patented the technology which formed the basis of his spin-off, nanoGriptech. Dr. Sitti has won numerous awards throughout his career.
‘Since the company was launched as a spin out of CMU, it has pursued a path to revolutionize the field of bio-inspired adhesive technology,’ adds Mr. Kuhn. ‘We are particularly grateful to Metin Sitti and his team for their hard work in bringing this technology to life. We also appreciate the tireless efforts of our technical team led by Dr. Paul Glass, our vice president of engineering.’
The company has received Small Business Innovation research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) grants from the National Science Foundation, NASA, and the Department of Defense, along with funding from Innovation Works, Breakout Labs, Idea Foundry, Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, PA NanoMaterials Commercialization Center and several private investors.
ITIC’s investment will bring more than capital to nanoGriptech. The organization’s technical resources and business expertise will support the growth of nanoGriptech’s customer base across Asia. Additionally, nanoGriptech’s board of directors will be strengthened by Hans Tai, president of ITIC. Mr. Tai has had a successful career as a venture capitalist in Silicon Valley and at ITIC, with several notable exits in the U.S., including Netscreen (acquired by Juniper Networks for $4 billion in 2004), Abovenet, Capella Microsystems (a U.S.-based company that went public in Taiwan), PayPal, Mobilink, Focus.com, Provilla, Chirp and Protego.
‘We are very excited about the opportunities with nanoGriptech, whose products we see as a strategic t with many of our limited partners to push the boundaries of the adhesives industry,’ says Mr. Tai.
Cinnie Huang, a CMU alumna who is an investment manager for ITIC, will serve as a board observer.
Pittsburgh Business Times Article: https://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/news/2018/12/12/nanogriptech-secures-1-7-million-in-funding.html