Private equity turns the spin-off 2DMatch into Matteco, an R&D&i company for the production of green hydrogen

Matteco Team
Matteco Team
The spin-off of the University of Valencia 2DMatch has just become Matteco, a company focused on the development of advanced materials for the production of green hydrogen and decarbonisation. The leap occurs thanks to the private investment of Zubi Labs, the business factory led by the Valencian Iker Marcaide, joined in this project by the researcher from the Institute of Molecular Science (ICMol) Gonzalo Abellán, both co-founders of the new entity.

Green hydrogen has become a crucial energy vector to eliminate carbon emissions from large industries, such as steel and chemicals, or the mobility and long-distance transportation sectors. In fact, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) estimates that hydrogen could contribute 20% to the total global emissions reductions necessary to reach the so-called net zero scenario in 2050.

After putting its first innovation on the market - new generation catalysts and electrodes for the production of green hydrogen through water electrolysis - Matteco is now a reality. The new company, which together with the patent licensed by the UV to the old 2DMath , inherits the status of spin-off of the University of Valencia, is the result of a decade of multidisciplinary research centralised in the Institute of Molecular Science of the academic institution. Co-founded by Iker Marcaide and Gonzalo Abellán - principal investigator, leader of the 2D-Chem materials research group at ICMol and co-inventor of the patent - its pioneering technology focuses on alkaline electrolysis (AWE) and the novel anion exchange membrane electrolysis (AEM).

New generation materials

The new generation materials developed by the University of Valencia are designed to significantly reduce energy consumption by up to 30% and improve the efficiency of electrolysers - equipment that generates hydrogen - in order to increase production, operating at higher current densities. and with long-term durability, as an impetus for the transition towards this clean and versatile energy. "Our technology is a consequence of years of research in which we have been able to synthesise and scale a catalyst that, without containing critical materials such as iridium or platinum, surpasses them in performance. In addition, it is a very flexible technology that allows us to produce even large-sized electrodes. We are focused on solutions for high current densities with low energy consumption for the electrolysis process", comments Gonzalo Abellán, Matteco co-founder and CTO.

For his part, Iker Marcaide, co-founder, CEO of Matteco and executive president of Zubi Group, adds: "At Zubi we work on big challenges, such as climate change. Hydrogen is a great opportunity to contribute to providing a solution to sectors and uses that are difficult to decarbonize, and where electrification does not provide an answer. Matteco aims to be a key agent in the value chain, contributing to reducing the cost and accelerating the adoption of hydrogen".

Investment and facilities

For its activity, which until now it has carried out from the ICMol, in the UV Science Park, Matteco has acquired a 10,000 m2 facility in the town of Paterna, in Valencia. There will be a factory dedicated to the production of powder catalysts and electrodes that will open its doors in the second quarter of 2024. The company plans to invest 15 million euros until 2025.

Zubi Labs, part of Zubi Group, is an impact company builder aimed at creating companies oriented towards solving social and environmental challenges. Zubi Group is one of the main members of Cleantech for Iberia, the European alliance promoted by Cleantech Group and Breakthrough Energy - Bill Gates’ initiative aimed at decarbonising the planet - to consolidate the Iberian Peninsula as an industrial hub for clean technologies in Europe. It encompasses a group of companies that focus on four business areas - entrepreneurship, sustainable urban development, investment and education - and that maintain a common purpose: solving challenges to create a better future.