Entrepreneur to move company to Sweden from Australia to continue biobased materials research; Cass Materials has been accepted to BizMakers Forest Business Accelerator with RISE-backed project on virgin wood fibers, nanocellulose composite materials

Sample article from our Bioeconomy

April 12, 2022 (press release) –

The entrepreneur and scientist Gary Cass are moving his company from Australia to Örnsköldsvik to conduct his research in bio-based materials

– Sweden is one of the global leaders in creating a circular economy with a cellulose-based society. For this reason, I am currently relocating my Australia-based company to Örnsköldsvik, Sweden to start Cass Materials AB, says Gary Cass.

The world is facing major changes when it comes to replacing fossil raw materials with bio-based ones. Örnsköldsvik continues to grow as a node for researching and developing bio-based alternatives.

- After searching the world for specialists in the cellulose world, I found Sweden, specifically Örnsköldsvik, had the resources and experts that I knew I wanted to partner with to take my innovation to the next level. I believe Örnsköldsvik will become a global innovation hub in the biobased and sustainability space, and I want to be a part of that, says Gary Cass.

Gary Cass has extensive experience working with innovations in bio-based materials, including recycled textiles from the fashion industry. Cass has worked with various actors in the Örnsköldsvik region since 2018 and has visited several times

- Working at the Domsja Fabriker research facilities over the years I met many people from RISE Processum. This professional relationship has grown over the years, knowing that each of our skill sets complements each other. This has allowed us to further the partnership that I believe will lead to more success in the future, says Gary Cass.

Cass Materials is one of the start-ups that has been accepted to BizMakers Forest Business Accelerator program for 2021. The project is named ‘Virgin Wood Fibres and Bacterial Nanocellulose Composite Materials as a Biobased Superabsorbent for the Absorbency Industry” and is supported by RISE Processum and SCA.

- I have been helped greatly by Bizmaker and their Forest Business Accelerator for its amazing programming and the ability for me to link with businesses, and services and gain local knowledge before I relocate myself to Örnsköldsvik. Bizmaker has become a bridge for me between Australia and Sweden.

The innovation environment in Västernorrland is growing and RISE and BizMaker are important actors to provide entrepreneurs with key components that enable quick and efficient upscaling of their biobased ideas. Cass will be located in RISE Processums facilities within High Coast Innovation Park. RISE Processum provides a unique test and demo environment focusing on scaling up circular biobased processes. The company LabService also actively contributed to bringing Cass to Örnsköldsvik and will also participate in the project.

- I am looking forward to welcoming Gary back to Örnsköldsvik. It’s amazing to see up close how all the different players in the region come together to provide an innovative environment that can attract talent and businesses from outside of Sweden and even outside of Europe. I hope and believe that many more international entrepreneurs will discover all the possibilities we as a region can offer when it comes to transforming good ideas into large-scale businesses, says Gunnar Westin, acting head of Biotechnology at RISE Processum. 

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