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Gloucestershire Business News

VIDEO: Versarien 'on an upward spiral'

Versarien, the Gloucestershire-based advanced engineering materials group, has seen a 34 per cent rise in group revenues in the past year.

The company's revenues from continuing operations rose to £7.63 million for the 12 months to March 31, up from £5.69 million for the same period last year. Graphene revenues rose 170 per cent to £1.89 million (2021: £0.70 million).

However, the firm reported a loss for the period of £5.20 million (2021: £8.07 million).

Highlights of the past year included relocation to a new dedicated graphene production facility in Longhope, Forest of Dean, to significantly expand capacity.

In addition, a 10,000 square foot floor slab was laid for the new Versarien innovation centre using the company's CementeneTM and PolygreneTM enhanced concrete.

A commercial agreement was signed with Superdry to produce graphene enhanced garments and discussions are ongoing with multiple other garment suppliers.

Versarien successfully delievered a Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) contract within specification

Funding highlights included a £1.93 million strategic investment in Versarien by GrapheneLab Co. Ltd., South Korea, together with royalty and trademark agreements.

Just this week, sports brand Umbro has announced it will integrate Versarien's Graphene-Wear™ technology into its "Elite Pro-Training Kit" range for the spring/summer collection 2023.

Versarien CEO Neill Ricketts said: "The period has seen the financial benefits of the DSTL contract focussed on understanding the benefits that graphene-loaded materials may bring to defence applications with Group revenues from continuing operations up 34 per cent and reported losses significantly reduced.

"Alongside the expansion of our production facilities in Longhope, we continue to progress the applications in which graphene can be used with a view to launching new graphene enhanced products over the coming months.

"It's an upward spiral - the more people who are starting using our technology the more people who want to use it. So following the announcement this week the technology is going to feature in some of the pro-training kit for Umbro we've had lots of other enquiries.

"We're engaged with various parts of the defence industry. We've just completed a £2 million project with DSTL, the Defence Scientific and Technology Laboratory, and we're hoping to work with them on a whole range of things whether it's boots, fatigues, undergarments, underpants, socks, weapons or defence mechanisms.

"There are great opportunities for Versarien and part of this project we've been able to successfully deliver has opened up the eyes of people in those organisations as to how credible Versarien is and how able it is to deliver on those projects."

"Customer testing continues to prove successful and we are seeing increased interest from global companies in signing development agreements that may, in time, lead to significant future revenues whilst at the same time we are looking to expand our global footprint and enter into agreements with the right strategic partners for the business, in part helped by having passed the accreditation of the Graphene Council."

Versarien's non-executive Chair Diane Savory OBE said: "We continue to expand our production capability at Longhope and develop our international footprint and product portfolio with the objective of being a global player in the graphene market. At the same time monetisation of the technology remains a priority and the progress made since my appointment a few months ago is pleasing to see.

"We are engaging with a number of international textile brands to launch garments in the coming seasons and have launched our Graphene-WearTM website to showcase what can be achieved.

"CementeneTM, our graphene admixture, has been used in a number of concrete pours, providing validation for the technology. The next stage will be to obtain the necessary accreditations to allow full-scale commercialisation, a process which is underway.

"Whilst we are pleased with the progress made, we cannot ignore the fact that the pandemic and recent macro-economic events have provided a challenging environment, especially as we have a global footprint to our operations."

VIDEO: 3D printed lifestyle pods launched by Versarien 

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