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June 30, The Hague. Four months ago, South Korea’s largest chemicals manufacturer committed various types of funding with the size of 9 billion USD up to 2025 in total for collaborations with sustainable startups by launching the LG Chem Global Innovation Challenge 2022. LG Chem partnered with Unknown Group – a Dutch VC and Open Innovation firm – with a view to expanding their existing open innovation by collaborating with startups worldwide.


 The scope of the LG Chem Global Innovation Challenge was focused on scaling promising technologies in circular plastics, renewable hydrogen, carbon utilization and sustainable battery materials for speedy commercialization. Selected out of 98 applicants from 30 countries, the seven finalists are:


RenewCO2 (USA), who develops clean electrochemical processes that use electrolysis to convert carbon dioxide into monomers and other organic chemicals.


Power to Hydrogen (USA), creators of Clean Energy Bridge™, an advanced reversible fuel cell technology that cost-effectively and efficiently converts electricity and water into high purity hydrogen and oxygen, and when needed back to power.


IQ Energy (Canada) design, build, and market clean energy products like counter-flow bio-mass gasification systems to convert otherwise underutilized waste streams into valuable ‘clean’ energy.


E-Magy (The Netherlands), who have created a solution – a nano-porous silicon – to overcome the challenges of applying silicon in lithium-ion battery anodes and make big improvements in battery performance for electrically powered mobility.


Synova (The Netherlands), creators of The Self Powered Circular Recycling Plant, which diverts waste from landfills and closes the loop on the plastic supply chain through continual use of resources with a patented thermochemical recycling process.


Interface Polymers (UK), developers of a unique additive to transform polyolefin (main ingredient of high-performance filters) performance and cost competitiveness in any market application where interfacial compatibility or surface properties are important.


Great Wrap (Australia), who has created a 100% compostable stretch wrap from potatoes that takes less than 180 days to break down into carbon and water in a compost pile.


Seungsuk Yoo, LG Chem’s Head of Open Innovation department said: “This event is the first step to opening the door to building an ecosystem for continuous collaboration between LG Chem and promising startups in the world. LG Chem has a strong commitment to continue working with bright entrepreneurs to tackle various challenges in our industry. I really appreciate all the participants who shared their passions and visions with us and congratulate again to all the finalists.”


Jurgen Nieuwenhuijsen, Unknown Group COO said: “With close to 100 applications from four continents and 30 countries – from Congo to Finland, from Latvia to Thailand, it’s great to see the global participation from bold and innovative startups for the first-ever LG Chem Global Innovation Challenge. Congratulations to the finalists, who now have a world-leader in chemicals manufacturing in their corner as they scale their impactful solutions”.



Be inspired by cutting edge technologies from all over the world and stay up to date with the latest opportunities for startups.


By identifying and collaborating with the most game-changing players with disruptive technologies from around the world, LG Chem expands its impact, whilst finding new directions, industries, business models, and ideas. The seven finalists will be pitching their solutions to LG Chem business units in South Korea, the US and Europe with a view to receiving funding opportunities and setting up PoC (Proof of Concept) projects and further collaborations. 


About LG Chem and the LG Chem Global Innovation Challenge 

LG Chem is a leading global chemical company with a diversified business portfolio in the key areas of petrochemicals, advanced materials, and life sciences. The company manufactures a wide range of products from high-value-added petrochemicals to renewable plastics, specializing in cutting-edge electronic and battery materials, as well as drugs and vaccines to deliver differentiated solutions for its customers. For more information, visit

LG Chem is committed to reaching carbon-neutral growth by 2030 and net-zero emissions by 2050 by managing the impacts of climate change and making positive contributions to society through renewable energy and responsible supply chains. Headquartered in Seoul, Korea, LG Chem has multiple operation sites worldwide and generated KRW 42.7 trillion (USD 37.3 billion) in sales in 2021. For more information, please visit

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Unknown Group

LG Chem 

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