Gainesville Tech Fund Selects Mattrix Technologies for Inaugural Investment
Mattrix Technologies is the first company targeted for investment by the newly established Gainesville Tech Fund, organized by venture capital firm Kirenaga. The investors in the fund include successful entrepreneurs and local business leaders.
The UF startup has created a new way of manufacturing displays that dramatically reduces the cost and improves the performance of OLED displays. Despite OLEDs outperforming even the best liquid crystal displays (LCDs), LCDs continue to dominate the display market – think phones, tablets, laptops, desktops, televisions, billboards, virtual reality glasses, and more – because OLEDs are expensive to manufacture.
However, Mattrix Technologies, a resident client at UF Innovate | The Hub, has found a way to use LCD manufacturing techniques to produce OLEDs at a fraction of the cost. While much of the industry has focused on creating better light-emitting materials (organic semiconductors and quantum dots), the UF startup has focused on the technology that supplies the electrical current that is converted into light by the OLED.
By doing so, Mattrix may lower the cost of manufacturing better quality screens while repurposing old LCD factories, a win for consumers and manufacturers. The investment by the Gainesville Tech Fund will allow the company to build more advanced prototypes, providing further proof of concept of its technology.
“We are thrilled to have the Gainesville Tech Fund on board,” says Max Lemaitre, CEO and founder of Mattrix. “This investment will allow us to develop and demonstrate some of the amazing features of our pixel technology in real display applications. The Gainesville Tech Fund is providing a fantastic boost to the vibrant local start-up community. It’s a very exciting time to be innovating in Gainesville.”
The company’s technology uses research – 16 patents for carbon nanotubes and thin-film transistors – licensed from the University of Florida. The technology enables three key benefits:
- Better displays, including brighter screens that use less power and last longer, bendable screens for phones and laptops, and screens that can become completely transparent.
- Greener manufacturing processes, reducing the total energy and number of manufacturing steps needed to produce the screens.
- Recycling of obsolete factories, using much of the same tooling as existing LCD factories (saving up to $900M per factory line).
In June, venture capital firm Kirenaga announced it was vying for the interest of investors for a Gainesville Tech Fund to provide Alachua County businesses the funding and resources they need to become a commercial success. Kirenaga has been investing in Florida companies since 2015 and targets businesses with significant potential for commercial growth and success.
“We now have over 50 investors in the greater Gainesville region alone who have come together to make sure local companies like Mattrix receive the right funding at the right time,” said Jim Thomas, Florida ecosystem leader and partner at Kirenaga.
“This success demonstrates the power to do great things when people catalyze capital to move a community forward. We believe the leadership shown in Gainesville will create a movement around the entire state that will spur innovation, grow new high-wage jobs, and foster prosperity.”
In July 2020, UF Innovate | Ventures announced inaugural investments in Mattrix Technologies, following JSR Corporations repeat investment in the display startup. Samsung Venture Investment Corporation is also an investor in the company.
About Mattrix Technologies
Founded in 2018, Mattrix Technologies is a semiconductor device company developing a breakthrough pixel architecture for flat-panel displays. The company has pioneered its revolutionary OLET (organic light-emitting transistor) technology to enable the cost-effective production of large-area displays.
OLET is a new paradigm for emissive displays that solves the backplane challenges that have limited the adoption of AMOLED displays. At the heart of this breakthrough is a proprietary pixel architecture that combines the drive transistor, storage capacitor and light-emitting layers into a single element. This enables a full-aperture, bottom emission display that simplifies the manufacturing process, increases product lifetime and panel brightness.
For more information about Mattrix Technologies, please visit www.mattrix.com
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