"Our journey has only just begun. We provide a unique technology and know-how to boost engineering creativity in marine antifouling coating formulations that can address future demands."
I-Tech is an innovative bio-tech company that addresses biological-driven industrial problems by combining in-depth know how of biosciences with advanced industrial chemistry.
To-date, our focus has been to present a more sustainable and powerful way to reduce barnacle growth on ship hulls and other underwater structures. When our technology, Selektope® is integrated in traditional marine antifouling paints, barnacles are unable to settle on the coated surface as they are repelled away. The mode of action of Selektope® is based on classical receptor stimulation science.
The 20-year development and industrialisation period for Selektope® has resulted in the commercialisation of a unique ingredient technology that reduces fuel consumption, emissions to air and enables hull to be kept cleaner, even under high biofouling pressure.
When properly formulated by skilled engineering teams at our customers, Selektope® also helps to reduce the risks of transporting alien aquatic species between ecosystems which is one of the major environmental problems within shipping next to the industry’s GHG footprint. In addition, when engineers take maximum use of the power in Selektope®, the overall use of biocides and metal oxides can be considerably reduced in future.
Today, Selektope® acts as a performance ingredient (biocide) inside marine antifouling paints sold by some of the biggest marine paint manufacturers in the world. Jotun, Chugoku Marine Paints and Hempel are all using the technology within commercial antifouling paint products available on the market. Their inclusion of Selektope® in their paint products can enable the extension of idling period and guarantees end-users the static performance of their coatings.
Yet, the journey has only just begun, and our aim is to provide our customers with this unique technology and the best possible know of how to boost the engineering creativity in their paint formulations to help them address also future demands on marine antifouling coatings.
Vessel hulls coated with Selektope®-containing paints can withstand extended periods at anchor, even in tough waters, with a hull that is ready to perform as it did before the anchoring period began. This translates to significant fuel savings, and reduced emissions of green-house gases, for the many vessels that have scheduled or unexpected idling periods.
With improved resistance to barnacle fouling, heavy cleaning damaging the original coating system can also be avoided. Such aspects are highly welcomed in the new building market as well, where extensive outfitting periods are frequent.
Furthermore, in some regions, the end-user (ship operator) is required to declare the hull condition of a vessel in advance of arrival at a port in order to get an approval for entry. In a few cases so far, vessels have been denied entry to ports due to the biofouling condition on the hull and niche areas posing a great threat to biosecurity.
Being a highly regulated industry, Selektope® is one of only a handful different compounds approved for use in commercial marine coatings. This regulatory framework constitutes a significant entry barrier that together with a strong IPR portfolio in back and front end gives I-Tech a unique position and a hugely scalable business set up.
I look forward to working our way into this 350-500 MUSD total market opportunity.
Gothenburg, January 2021
Philip Chaabane, CEO I-Tech AB