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Slippery coating tested on Heinz ketchup

LiquiGlide’s coatings to hit shelves in 2015

By Jenny Eagle+

27-Feb-2014
Last updated on 27-Feb-2014 at 16:56 GMT

LiquiGlide can raise a smile for devotees of products such as ketchup (Photo: Shamaasa/Flickr)
LiquiGlide can raise a smile for devotees of products such as ketchup (Photo: Shamaasa/Flickr)

LiquiGlide is celebrating an anniversary milestone after seeing demand grow for its Invention of the Year Award, a wet slippery coating used in packaging.

The company, which creates the slippery surfaces was created in 2012 by Dave Smith and Kripa Varanasi, after LiquiGlide won the audience choice at the MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) $100K Entrepreneurship Competition and won the Mass Challenge competition.

Consumer Packaged Goods

It initially focused on packaging and processing applications in the consumer goods industry because it offers a differentiated product and packaging, with less waste in processing lines and cost savings.

In the first year of operations, it signed 22 clients, finished six coatings, and is months away from commercializing the first applications of its technology.

Carsten Boers, president, LiquiGlide, told FoodProductionDaily.com its mission is to change the way all liquids flow.

“Currently, we are working closely with clients to implement our first commercialized coatings for processing applications over the next few months,” said Boers.

“We are also collaborating with consumer brands to line up many different products with LiquiGlide’s coatings to hit shelves in 2015. The first three products with LiquiGlide coatings that you will see are toothpaste, mayonnaise and paint.2

The technology was initially developed in the Varanasi Research Group laboratory at MIT and has generated an enormous amount of attention receiving more than 3,000 inquiries and having more than 100 consumer goods companies visit its offices in the first year.

Viscous liquids slide easily

“Our coatings are permanently wet; there is no other durable solution that makes viscous liquids slide easily,” said Boers.

“Conventional superhydrophobic coatings that work like water on a lotus leaf may give you a similar visual effect, but they’re not durable and they’re definitely not safe for human consumption.

“Our coatings are custom-designed to match each application – choosing materials that don’t react or mix with the product. For food applications, our coating is literally made from food such as vegetable oil, so it’s naturally safe.”

Boers added it currently has confidentiality agreements with its clients, but it is working with some of the biggest name brands in the global consumer packaged goods industry.

Dave Smith, CEO, LiquiGlide added typically, a new technology takes seven to 10 years to get from the lab into the market but due to the nature of the product it has the ability to integrate into existing systems and will have its first commercialization in less than two years’ time.

Key Milestones for LiquiGlide’s First Year of Business:

  • 3,000+ inquiries received about LiquiGlide’s technology
  • 22+ blue chip-clients signed globally
  • Multiple exclusivity agreements optioned
  • First custom coatings released and approved for commercialization by clients
  • More than six finished coatings ready for licensing
  • Two patents granted and 20+ pending
  • Staff growth from three to 18 employees

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