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Alfons Hidalgo Enguix (Photo: Barcelona Science Park).

Alfons Hidalgo, co-founder of Infinitec, joins shareholders in CSIC spin-off ADParticles

ADParticles, a spin-off of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), has just closed a €1-million round of investment, taken up by Alfonso Hidalgo Enguix, co-founder of biotech firm Infinitec Activos, which is based at the Barcelona Science Park. The operation comes just weeks after Hidalgo acquired a 7.8% stake in Pangaea Oncology, investing €2.6 million, and after selling Infinitec last September to German multinational corporation Evonik.

Alfonso Hidalgo, the Centre for the Development of Industrial Technology (CDTI) and the Science Equity BeAble Capital fund, have become the benchmark stakeholders in ADParticles. Together these three will be key to securing a promising future for the company, as CEO Irene Zaldívar explained: “My challenge now, and that of the whole ADParticles team, is to keep working to become the benchmark in innovation in the sector for our continued advances by carrying out unique projects designed specifically to care for skin and the environment.”

ADParticles is a clear case of successful technology transfer, thanks to the firm commitment of Beable Capital from the very beginning, which still holds a stake in the company today. Then, also thanks to the support of the CDTI through the INNVIERTE programme to support technology SMEs, the company reached an important milestone with FDA certification of its products.

Photo: ADParticles team.

“Now, thanks to private investor Alfonso Hidalgo, who is a benchmark in the sector and will contribute his expertise and experience as a member of the ADParticles board, we are moving into a growth phase focused mainly on a new stage of internationalisation in strategic countries, coinciding with growing industry demand and interest for mineral filters, as they are more sustainable and better for the skin,” explains Zaldívar.

ADParticles is a spin-off of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) that has been very successful in developing and marketing innovative products in the nanotechnology sector, such as mineral UV filters, which are much in demand in the cosmetics market to replace organic UV filters. Since it was created in 2011, the company’s international projection and growth has been exponential. One of the main applications for the technology developed by AD Particles is its line of natural, organic cosmetic ingredients, which are used in sun creams and colour cosmetics sold under the name ADP Cosmetics.

ADP Cosmetics’ micrometric-sized ingredients are specially designed to protect the skin and the environment and are used to make cosmetic products, especially sun creams. Its enhanceU mineral filters are highly efficient, photostable and hypoallergenic, helping boost solar protection factor (SPF) and provide broad-spectrum coverage (UVA, UVB, blue light) all in one ingredient. Plus, production is completely sustainable (no water, low power use, natural raw materials, no organic solvents, no waste).

Unlike chemical filters, mineral filters are much less aggressive on the skin because they create an external ‘barrier’ that reflects the sun’s rays. They act like a mirror, thanks to their natural minerals, which are totally safe for both users and the planet, and leave no chemical residue in the sea or other natural environments.

This is backed by COSMOS and ECOCERT certifications, which ensure they are natural, organic products that are not harmful to the environment, registered and certified by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In addition to enhanceU, the company has also developed colour pigments called effectiveU that give colour cosmetic sun creams a wider variety of tones.

Acquisition of a 7.8% stake in Pangaea Oncology

Pangaea Oncology, which specialises in precision oncology and has ties to the Barcelona Science Park as a member company, brought Alfonso Hidalgo into the fold in late November when he invested a total of €2,598,693.52 to purchase 1,755,874 shares, as the company notified in a statement sent to BME Growth.

This acquisition means Hidalgo’s personal holding company (Ideas de Bombero) now controls 7.8% of the company.

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