Finland's Fiberwood believes it has a novel solution for insulating property interiors, using spare wood fibres left behind after the bulk of tree bark has been processed.
Existing home insulation sheets often use fossil-derived plastic, like polystyrenes, or else mineral wools like stone or glass.
Fiberwood, which recently raised a $3 million late seed, wants to deliver a more ecological and environmentally friendly alternative. As its insulation sheets incorporate the natural traits of trees, they also possess their natural air pockets for keeping heat inside, a boost for the material's insulation capabilities.
Market estimates suggest producing materials to insulate interiors is a €25 billion market. Wood is increasingly favoured as one way of building greener properties, as opposed to emissions-heavy processes like cement making. Using wood fibres for insulation could help square the circle in terms of sustainable homes.
Estimates show construction causes around 40% of global carbon emissions. In response, the prevalence of wood materials to build new buildings is expected to reach 30% by mid-century, a significant increase from 10% today.
The pre-seed round is led by Metsa Group's innovation wing, Metsa Spring, with participation from Stephen Industries and public finance from Business Finland. Proceeds will go to building a pilot construction plant to make the wood fibre insulation materials, in preparation for industrial-scale manufacturing.
Tage Johansson, Fiberwood CEO, said: "We are contributing towards a more sustainable future by using side streams, producing high-value products energy efficiently, and by accelerating the potential of wood-based construction.
"We are grateful to our investors for believing in our product's potential, and for the opportunity to use Metsä Group's forest industry side streams as raw material.”