Company Description

Lignolix Inc. is a startup, spun out of the University of Delaware in 2019, commercializing a patent-pending process to upcycle lignin-rich biomass waste into valuable and sustainably-sourced chemicals for cosmetic and beauty companies to use as “clean” ingredients. Cosmetic consumers are demanding clean products at an accelerating rate, but current ingredients are often petroleum-sourced or extremely expensive alternatives from plant sources, making it difficult for formulators to deliver high-quality products that meet consumer demands. Lignolix is focused on solving this major problem for cosmetic formulators by offering a bio-based alternative that is 30% cheaper and replaces up to six ingredients. Additionally, Lignolix has significant potential for environmental impact by upcycling part of the 100 million tons of lignin waste generated per year, which is either burned or landfilled; thus, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by up to 30%. Lignolix will also displace the petrochemicals or virgin plants that are currently the source of cosmetic ingredients, resulting in more sustainable and simpler products. The innovation developed by the Lignolix team is a patent-pending intensified reductive catalytic fractionation (RCF) process to depolymerize lignin, either isolated or from whole biomass, into valuable aromatic chemicals. Conventional RCF operates with an alcohol solvent, typically methanol, at around 250 °C with external H2, leading to operating pressures >80 bar. Lignolix's process is significantly safer, more scalable, less energy intensive, and more sustainable than competing technologies.

Contact Person

Eric Gottlieb

Eric Gottlieb is the CEO and cofounder of Lignolix. He has his BS and PhD in chemistry from Carnegie Mellon University and was a chemical engineering postdoctoral researcher in chemical engineering at the University of Delaware with Professor Thomas H. Epps, III. As CEO, Eric has obtained over $400,000 in non-dilutive funding and driven business development with multiple multibillion dollar companies.