IN-DEPTH WITH JAN HEIN DUIJN – MANAGER OPERATIONS, & DIRK VERBEEK – ENGINEERING MANAGER AT SOLLAS
In this project Impact Hub Amsterdam guided the innovation process and collaboration between Sollas and innovation partner 1.5 Ventures. The collaboration resulted in the development of a novel plastic overwrapping film – made of paper, instead of plastic.
Read on below the image to learn more about this project.
MEET THE CLIENTS
“We wanted to put sustainability on the agenda of all our departments and the management team. We also aimed to play a prominent role in the packaging chain and to be on the shortlist of companies potential customers call because we have the proper knowledge of sustainable wrapping solutions.
We needed to take a break from running every day to achieve both objectives. A third party, like Impact Hub, helps you stop; it provides an outside loop. Having the management team offsite for an entire morning at Impact Hub and focusing on one thing with a clear goal was immensely valuable.
That clear goal was to develop a coating that works with an overwrapping machine that seals inside out. This new coating would help us transition from plastic overwrapping plastic film to an innovative paper equivalent.
Thanks to the Impact Nation programme and being matched with our innovation partner 1.5 Ventures (Germany), we succeeded in co-developing this novel coating.”
“At the end of the 100 days of the Impact Nation programme, we pitched a concrete result that we are proud of: we showed – side by side – a box wrapped in transparent plastic and a box wrapped in translucent paper, a sustainable alternative for overwrapping paper boxes of high-end products like perfume and cosmetics.
At the 2023 Interpack fair, we took the next step: we presented an end-of-line solution for transparent, fully recyclable paper-based packaging. “
“It was a win-win; 1.5 Ventures has the technical and sustainability know-how about coating, and we are experts in the overwrapping process and the market.
So, 1.5 Ventures provided Sollas with knowledge, and, in return, we used our high-performance machines to give them a testing ground for their innovations.
In the long run, 1.5 Ventures wants to use the paper-related coating solution we co-developed for other parties, as it contributes to its broader goal: climate action and preventing the 1.5-degree warming of the planet.
As for Sollas, we are a machine factory that doesn’t sell or make paper. But customers will call somebody else if we don’t supply innovative solutions, like this end-of-line overwrapping solution using transparent paper. This solution will help us stay top of mind for our customers.”
“By selecting the right partner, we tried to get out of our comfort zone and create a more significant impact. We could have worked with a similar partner in the Netherlands but wouldn’t have achieved the same result.
We decided that Impact Nation is a one-time opportunity. So, we opted for innovation with 1.5 Ventures, a Germany-based company. It wasn’t our first choice, but Impact Hub – especially Innovate Specialist Charley Snoek – convinced us it was the right way to go.
We also realised we needed to hire a colleague who concentrates on making sustainability more concrete. Without The Impact Nation programme, we wouldn’t have done that: hiring someone very young with a different mindset.”
“9 out of 10!”
We help organisations by developing and validating sustainability propositions in a practical, structured, rapid and fun way – without allocating too many resources before a case is proven. We believe that starting out small whilst staying aligned with your overarching strategy, and scaling up fast after successful pilot validation is the best strategy for sustainable innovation. We currently do this for clients of ABN AMRO, and organisations such as Ikea, Roche and Marktplaats.