Our adventure started more than 30 years ago with two chemistry engineers. They believed in innovation for the environment and saw an opportunity to change waste into something valuable. Meet Olivier Lepez, CEO of ETIA.
Ever since ETIA was founded in 1989, we have designed, developed and delivered solutions to create value from waste. Our world leading technology converts biomass and waste into valuable resources and generate clean energy for a wide range of industries.
We started out in 2001 with creating a new type of rice packaging with material based on rice hulls, a bi-product from rice. However, when meeting with the purchasers it became clear that the product had a much higher cost than the original packaging. The sale fell through.
This was a very useful lesson for me, it taught me that you can have the most clever and sustainable product, but the key success factor is to have the right business model.
Sustainability is still in the center of business development for Vow today, but so are creativity, choosing the right materials, developing the most efficient production process, optimize quality and ensure to find a viable business model. This is how the company is able to solve some of the greatest challenges for a variety of industries, applying the same technology to a broad range of use cases.
And as for the rice hulls, the material turned into beautiful pieces of art. The willingness to pay for design was high enough to cover the production costs. You can see some of these art pieces hanging on the walls at my office. They remind me of Vow’s primary goal: making something valuable out of waste.
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