Procter & Gamble Co. revealed today it has partnered with a group of experts in launching new businesses to evaluate technology developed by P&G that has the potential to...
Apr. 21, 2017 - Barrett Brunsman - Cincinnati Business Courier
Procter & Gamble Co. revealed today it has partnered with a group of experts in launching new businesses to evaluate technology developed by P&G that has the potential to be commercialized by creating spinoffs.
One startup, based on plastics recycling technology developed by P&G, has already been created.
The Cincinnati-based maker of consumer goods such as Oral-B electric toothbrushes with Bluetooth connectivity (NYSE: PG) is the initial partner of a firm called Innventure – A Wasson Enterprise Partnership.
The Chicago-based firm is a joint venture of Wasson Enterprise, an angel investment group co-founded by former Walgreens drug stores CEO Gregory Wasson. He teamed with Michael Otworth, a veteran of launching new businesses who is founder and chief executive of Innventure, to create Innventure – A Wasson Enterprise Partnership.
“We welcome the formation of Innventure – A Wasson Enterprise Partnership and the complement it represents to P&G’s research and innovation efforts,” said Neil Jordan, vice president of corporate research and development and P&G Ventures. “Their collective experience positions them well to serve as an important strategic partner to help us scale disruptive technologies and generate shareholder value.”
Wasson is chairman of Innventure – A Wasson Enterprise Partnership, and Otworth is CEO. Wasson launched Wasson Enterprise after retiring from Walgreens in 2015, following the merger of one of the nation’s largest drug store chains with Alliance Boots of Europe.
Innventure will evaluate P&G technology to determine what sort of company could be created. Each startup’s management team will be selected by Innventure, which will help scale the business and have a stake in it.
For example, PureCycle Technologies, which was launched in the fourth quarter of 2015 based on P&G research and development, claims to offer the first virgin-like polypropylene resin at prices comparable to virgin polypropylene. Otworth is CEO of the startup.
“Our proprietary process removes color, odor and other contaminants resulting in 100 percent virgin-like polypropylene from recycled feedstock with potentially unlimited markets,” according to PureCycle Technologies.
Innventure – A Wasson Enterprise Partnership is “looking forward to accelerating and increasing opportunities with P&G – as well as with other multinationals – to build companies that transform markets,” Wasson said.
P&G’s objective is to generate maximum value from its R&D as well as its intellectual property, spokesman Damon Jones told me.
“Given the breadth and depth of our R&D organization, we generate a wide range of technologies – not all of which are consistent with our focus on brand development in our 10 core categories,” Jones said.
“Our intent is not to create spinoffs,” Jones said. “Through our work with Innventure, we are simplifying the process by which we can commercialize many of these assets. This organization understands our technologies (as well as other large multinationals) and has experience connecting them with viable third parties. This speeds up the process and makes it more attractive financially for all parties involved.
“What I wouldn’t want people to take away is that we are looking to work with a wide range of angel investors,” Jones said. “We’re just looking for the simplest way to maximize assets.”