TômTex Secures $2.25 Million in Seed Funding, Surpassing $4.15 Million Total Raise

Editorial TeamEditorial Team
November 28th, 2023
12:39 PM

TômTex, a sustainable biomaterial producer, has secured $2.25 million in a seed round led by Happiness Capital, with participation from prominent climate-tech venture firms, marking a significant milestone for the visionary founder Uyen Tran.

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Sustainable biomaterial producer TômTex has successfully concluded a seed round, securing an impressive $2.25 million. Spearheaded by visionary founder Uyen Tran, the funding round was led by global venture capital firm Happiness Capital, with notable participation from climate-tech venture firms SOSV, Parley for the Oceans, Earth Ventures, and MIH Capital.

Expressing enthusiasm about the fundraising success, Uyen Tran highlighted the strategic significance of the capital infusion. "I am excited about our recent fundraising success, which will fuel TômTex’s team growth, key hires, and expanded manufacturing. Beyond scaling, it’s a strategic step to secure new contracts and revenue, strengthening our market position," Tran remarked. She expressed gratitude to the dedicated team and investors who share the vision of TômTex's scalable and sustainable biomaterial technology platform, emphasizing the collective journey toward a more sustainable and innovative future.


Revolutionary Biodegradable Materials

Established just three years ago, TômTex specializes in creating proprietary, 100 percent naturally biodegradable materials, including the innovative Series WS crafted from shell seafood waste and the recently introduced Series M derived from mushrooms. Both materials leverage raw chitosan, a biopolymer found in seafood shells and mushrooms, and are processed sustainably using a 100 percent green chemical process.

Unlike challenges faced by some in the alternative leather market, TômTex has overcome commercial scaling hurdles by utilizing food waste as a raw material rather than growing new materials in a lab. Notably, the company recently achieved a significant milestone with its first continuous roll-to-roll material production, producing 100 linear feet in the initial run, with plans for a follow-up production ten times larger in the coming weeks.

Eric Ng, General Partner at Happiness Capital, expressed enthusiasm about being part of TômTex's transformative journey. "Their biomaterial technology is a game-changer, not just for its viability in the market but also for its sustainability. Investing in TômTex means investing in a scalable platform that has the potential to revolutionize industries while making a positive impact on our planet."


Tackling Textile and Food Waste

Taking its name from the Vietnamese words for "shrimp" and "textiles," TômTex aims to address two critical issues simultaneously – textile and food waste. Founder Uyen Tran, born and raised in Danang, Vietnam, a prominent textile hub, has witnessed firsthand the environmental impact of textile pollution. Moreover, Vietnam discards nearly one million tons of aquaculture waste annually. For Tran, expanding the potential of chitosan by offering a new regenerative source made from mushrooms presents an opportunity to address both issues effectively.

Tien Nguyen, General Partner at Earth Venture Capital, emphasized the urgent need to address the environmental impact of synthetic leather items, pledging support to TômTex in tackling this problem. Aligning with TômTex's philosophy, "Waste is the new luxury," Nguyen highlighted the massive waste of shrimp shells in Vietnam and expressed commitment to TômTex's scaling phase, driven by a strong belief in the future of sustainable fashion. Innovating for a Sustainable Future

In a parallel development, four innovators, including Alexis Peña, have joined Chain Reaction Innovations (CRI), the Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Program at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory. Alexis Peña, through her company Good Fibes, aims to revolutionize the textile industry by producing artificial bioengineered protein-based fibers as a sustainable alternative to petroleum-derived textiles. This initiative, part of the seventh cohort of the CRI program, underscores the commitment to fostering innovation for sustainable solutions in the textile industry.