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The University of Southampton

Chemistry Spin-out Ilika Celebrates 10 years

Published: 24 June 2014
Ilika 10 Years

Ten years ago, Ilika was founded as a spin-out from Chemistry at the University of Southampton. Now based on the University of Southampton Science Park, the company is celebrating its 10 year anniversary.

Based at the University of Southampton Science Park
Ilika plc

Ten years ago, the company was founded as a spin-out from Chemistry at the University of Southampton. Since then Ilika has quickly established an international reputation for the rapid development of novel materials for energy and electronics applications and secured commercial partnerships with a portfolio of blue-chip companies including Asahi Kasei, Shell, Applied Materials and Toyota.

Today, Ilika's advanced high throughput techniques enable functional materials to be made, characterised and tested up to 100 times faster than traditional techniques.

Graeme Purdy, CEO at Ilika, comments, "Ilika's 10th anniversary is an exciting landmark for the company. We've transitioned from a youthful spin-out to a proven leader in accelerated materials innovation, introducing world firsts in technology solutions on the way.  But none of what's been achieved so far would have been possible without the support of our investors and the commitment from our staff and partners. Our ten year anniversary provides the perfect opportunity to thank our investors, staff and customers for their support and the promise of more exciting projects to come."

Chief Scientific Officer at Ilika and Professor of Physical Chemistry at University of Southampton
Professor Brian Hayden

"Ten years ago, we launched Ilika in response to the market requirement for an open innovation R&D company which could extend the capabilities of corporate in-house teams and work in collaboration to solve challenges in energy storage and electronic applications. Working in partnership with our clients, we can reduce both business and technical risk and maximise the likelihood of successful project outcomes."

In 2007, Ilika made the move to the University of Southampton Science Park, and in 2013 completed an expansion of a 200m2 laboratory facility. The company's growth has been financed by three rounds of venture capital, an initial public offering (IPO) on the London Stock Exchange in May 2010 and a Placing in April 2012.

Whilst celebrating its history, Ilika has its focus firmly on the future - as Graeme Purdy concludes, "With our recent breakthroughs with solid state battery technology and interesting projects in new market sectors such as aerospace, we are excited about the future. We look forward to continuing to push the barriers in materials innovation and providing an environment of open collaboration and innovation with our partners."

Significant milestones in Ilika's history include:

  • May 2004: Ilika Technologies Ltd founded and seed-round secured
  • August 2004: First commercial customer, Asahi Kasei, secured
  • May 2006: A round venture capital funding secured
  • February 2007: Operations expanded to current location on Southampton Science Park
  • September 2007: B round venture capital funding secured
  • October 2007: Shell becomes a partner for development of hydrogen storage technology
  • February 2008: Toyota becomes a partner for development of battery materials
  • May 2010: Successful IPO on London Stock Exchange
  • July 2010: Announcement of Fuel Cell programme with a major vehicle manufacturer
  • May 2011: First year results delivered in line with analyst's expectations
  • April 2012: Successful Placing on London Stock Exchange
  • January 2013: Completion of 200 m2 laboratory facility expansion
  • October 2013: New contracts with two of the world's largest aerospace companies
  • January 2014: World's first in solid state battery
  • May 2014: UK patent grants for solid state battery methodology
Graeme Purdy, CEO, Ilika and Steve Boydell, Finance Director, Ilika holding 10 year banner with Ilika team.
Ilika 10 Years
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