Norwegian ocean impact startup company Ogoori has secured NOK 9 million - about EUR 882,000 - in soft funding, providing the company with the opportunity to scale the Ogoori business and to launch its marine plastic onto the market. A three-year financing arrangement has been agreed with Agenda Vestlandet, a foundation created by the Norwegian bank, Sparebanken Vest, to accelerate the green shift in the Vestlandet region of Norway.
Ogoori was founded in Bergen, Norway, in 2019, by the Norwegian furniture brands Vestre and Ope, and Rune Gaasø, one of the founding members of Clean Shores Global, an NGO focussed on fighting marine pollution. The company aims to upcycle ocean plastic into useable recyclate that will be sold on the market, using a subscription model called Material as a Service (MaaS) to create what it calls a Regenerative Circular Value Chain.
To that end, Oogori is establishing a sustainable plastic value chain network that includes, among others, researchers, designers, plastic producers, conscious brands and industrial partners.
Ogoori sponsors ocean cleanup organisations: the plastic waste is sourced from beach cleanup organisations, while Ogoori is responsible for the actual process of upcycling into regranulate, in collaboration with partners from the industry. Blockchain technology is used to ensure the regranulate, which is supplied with a guarantee of origin, is fully traceable.
“We need to put value onto marine plastic in order to solve the problem,” said Siren Sundland, Chairperson of Agenda Vestlandet, and Executive Vice President in Sparebanken Vest.
“That is exactly why Agenda Vestlandet is supporting Ogoori’s effort to create a circular business model for marine plastic.”
Ogoori’s regenerative and circular business model aligns with Agenda Vestlandet Foundation’s mission. Sparebanken Vest has earmarked NOK 300 million for investments in sustainability and green growth projects through its Agenda Vestlandet Foundation to help Norwegian companies to compete in the international market.
“Green growth is possible and we aim to prove that through companies like Ogoori showing the way forward. By closing the loop and maintaining control over the materials we have a viable route towards decoupling resource intensity from economic growth,” says Jan Christian Vestre, CEO of Vestre and co-founder of Ogoori.
The Vestre furniture brand has just launched the world’s first bench, Coast, made from Ogoori marine plastic.