C3Nano, a company that makes the technology behind some of those transparent, flexible screens y’all are so crazy about, has just announced a $6.7 million round of funding.
The young company’s carbon hybrid-based ink and film is currently under evaluation with several Asian manufacturing companies.
“For a while it was difficult to talk to investors about OLED or flexible displays, but finally these products are reaching the market,” said C3Nano chief executive Cliff Morris in an email conversation with VentureBeat. “This creates downstream opportunities for novel materials companies such as C3Nano.”
C3Nano produces an interesting line of films and inks that act as transparent conductors. Other materials used in consumer electronics displays are based on carbon nanotubes, which the C3Nano team says have conductivity issues. They say their own films and inks, however, are “a high-performance, low-cost solution [that is] remarkably robust, making it an attractive option for emerging flexible and stretchable electronics.”
The CEO revealed that the company, which was founded in 2010, currently has paying customers in Korea and Japan. “These are great gateway countries for launching new display technologies,” he said.
Morris said the company is particularly excited by “applications that further integrate the display and the touch sensor into one device. Solution-coated ink such as ours serves those markets well, because normally the device producer is trying to lower their overall cost by either reducing their material and process cost or reduce cost through simplicity of design.” C3Nano, he noted, is able to do both.
The new financing will give the startup the ability to quickly build out its technical staff, complete its initial product, and provide resources for production volumes.
Phoenix Venture Partners led this round of funding with participation from GSR Ventures, an existing investor. To date, the startup has raised more than $10 million. Phoenix Venture Partners’ Dr. Nobi Kambe will join the C3Nano board.
To see the kinds of technology C3Nano is developing in action, check out this CES demo from Samsung:
Image via DVICE.