Infinite recycling startup to scale up with $100m investment

Joseph Brookes
Senior Reporter

Australia’s infinite recycling startup Samsara Eco has added $100 million and a host of new investors to its Series A, bringing total funding to more than $160 million as it eyes new facilities in South East Asia to recycle millions of tonnes of plastic waste.

The ANU spinout founded by Paul Riley on Thursday announced the additional funding and that new investment partners like Telstra, Hitachi, Luluemon and Wollemi Capital will join early backers Main Sequence, DCVC and Temasek, with the latter leading the round.

Samsara Eco, which was recognised with’s top award in 2022, uses patented enzymatic recycling technology to breakdown plastics and reuse them in new products, creating an infinite recycling.

The new raise gives the company a pathway to scale, historically a barrier for Australian startups.

Samsara Eco founder and chief executive Paul Riley will look to South East Asia to scale up his infinite recycling operation

The company announced a Series A in late 2022, initially raising $54 million. On Thursday, the company announced a Series A+ of $100 million, bringing total investment since launch to around $164 million.

The additional capital will help scale its recycling capabilities to more types of plastic and fund a new commercial facility in South East Asia.

“Plastics have been an environmental disaster with almost every piece of the 9 billion tonnes ever made still on the planet. But almost all plastic is reusable and recyclable with the right technology,” said Samsara Eco founder and chief executive Paul Riley.

Based on ANU research, Samsara Eco has created super enzymes which can break waste plastic back down to its core molecules, no matter what shape or colour it is. These core plastic molecules can then be used by manufacturers to make brand new items.

The company has explored recycled packaging for supermarket products with early backer Woolworths and recycled clothing with Lululemon, which participated in the latest additional funding.

The company continues to be based in its proof of concept facility in Canberra’s industrial district while if constructs a new facility in Jerrabomberra, NSW.

The Series A+ was led by global investment company, Temasek and Australian deep tech investment fund, Main Sequence New and existing backers included Wollemi Capital, lululemon, Hitachi Ventures, Titanium Ventures (formerly Telstra Ventures) and DCVC.

Samsara Eco launched in 2020 with investment from Main Sequence and Woolworths Group’s W23. An initial grant from the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre brought the company and partners together, accelerating its commercialisation.

“Samsara Eco demonstrates how science can deliver a real solution to huge problems — in this case, the accumulation of plastic waste and the continued need to produce new plastics from fossil fuels,” Main Sequence partner Phil Morle said.

Do you know more? Contact James Riley via Email.

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