Sponsored by Oregon Business

Trash to cash: Agilyx turns waste plastic into crude oil

| Print |  Email
Articles - October 2011
Thursday, September 22, 2011

 

Agilyx
CEO: Chris Ulum
Founded: 2004
Employees: 35
Capital raised: more than $26 million
Strategic partners: Waste Management, Total Fuels, Kleiner Perkins
Patents: one issued (August 2010), five pending
Alternative energy subsidies: None

The second step was to prove that their system was commercially viable. This took some maneuvering. Ulum reels off the major milestones in rapid succession, from memory. Having proved that they could make good oil from bad plastic, they then proved that:

  • Someone would buy that oil at a good price;
  • Patents would protect their technology;
  • The appropriate regulators would issue the necessary permits;
  • Top investors such as Kleiner Perkins of Silicon Valley would back the business;
  • Dominant handlers of oil and waste (French oil giant Total Fuels and U.S. waste powerhouse Waste Management) were willing to sign contracts to get in on the opportunity.

“We’ve done all of those things over the past 36 months,” says Ulum. “Now we’re in a position to go out and execute.”

Agilyx sold its first truckload of oil to U.S. Oil & Refining in Tacoma, Wash., in December 2009. After two and a half years of production, the company is shipping as much oil to Tacoma in a week as it used to produce in a quarter. But Ulum’s plan never involved creating a huge production plant in Tigard. Instead, the company plans to help partners who are already in the waste industry to install plastic-to-oil systems at recycling plants, landfills and waste transfer stations in the U.S. and abroad.

 



 

Comments   

 
Sustainable   Business
0 #1 Right on!Sustainable Business 2011-10-04 14:31:34
What a terrific idea, good job guys. I'm a little unclear what position you are going for in the market (factory operator, technology leaser, refinery contract negotiator?) but I am sure you will figure it out.
Quote | Report to administrator
 

More Articles

6 chiefs of staff dish on their bosses

The Latest
Thursday, February 05, 2015
legilistiblog-thumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

We ask chiefs of staff for the scoop on Oregon legislators.


Read more...

MBA Perspective

February 2015
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
BY KIM MOORE

Robin Anderson, dean of the Pamplin School of Business, University of Portland: "You need people who are comfortable leading in ambiguity."


Read more...

That's Not a Watch (This Is a Watch)

February 2015
Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Smartwatches are all the rage. But old-fashioned timepieces keep on ticking.


Read more...

Car Talk

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER

Everyone knows cell phones and driving are a lethal combination. The risk is especially high for teenage drivers, whose delusions of immortality pose such a threat to us all. Enforcement alas, remains feeble; more promising are pedagogical approaches aimed at getting people to focus on the road, not their devices.


Read more...

All Rise

March 2015
Friday, February 20, 2015
BY AMY MILSHTEIN | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Don’t just sit there. For a healthy workplace, move up and down — and all around.


Read more...

10 quotes explaining crisis at Port of Portland

The Latest
Friday, February 20, 2015
022015 port portland OBM-thumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

The ongoing labor disputes at the Port of Portland came to a head two weeks ago when Hanjin, the container port's largest client, notified its customers it would be ending its direct route to Oregon.


Read more...

Oregon Business expands events portfolio

The Latest
Friday, March 27, 2015
htctfacebookBY OB STAFF

New events series brings magazine to life.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS