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PEORIA – US-based Natural Fiber Welding Inc has closed an US$85m funding round to scale production of its Clarus and Mirum materials. Clarus is a family of high-performance, all-natural textiles, while Mirum is a next-generation, zero-plastic complement to leather. NFW’s global customer base includes leading brands which, according to NFW, “are aiming to provide their consumers with beautiful, high-performance petrochemical-free materials.”

NFW says it is also extending its product offerings to moulded composite materials to enable and encourage global brand partners to design circular products.

“We envision a world that doesn’t rely on plastic, where abundant natural materials enable people and the planet to thrive together,” said Luke Haverhals, CEO and founder of Natural Fiber Welding. “We’re here to leave the world better than we found it and we look forward to working with our brand partners to build a comprehensively circular coalition for the planet.”

Mirum is an all-natural material engineered for the footwear, fashion, automotive, and accessories markets. Its customizability means it can look like anything from leather to carbon fibre, making it a high-performance solution for designers and brands. Global brands including Alexander McQueen (MCQ), Pangaia, Bellroy, H&M, and Camper have adopted Mirum.

Clarus is a family of performance fabrics made from recycled and/or virgin natural fibres, which do not shed toxic microplastics. NFW develops Clarus materials with closed-loop green chemistry that enables new efficiencies while robust performance. This year, Ralph Lauren used the platform to launch a first-to-market product innovation, the RLX Clarus Polo Shirt, exclusively at the 2022 Australian Open Tennis Tournament. Chaco, a Wolverine Worldwide brand, is using recycled cotton Clarus shoe uppers that displace synthetic uppers.

“The world has become allergic to plastics, which have permeated every aspect of our lives, and we need to reverse this trend,” said Gregg Smith, founder of Evolution VC Partners. “NFW has proven product-market fit with disruptive high-performance, all-natural materials. The next generation of consumers will pressure every industry – from automotive to apparel and furniture – to eliminate petrochemical usage, and NFW’s advanced materials solve those problems.”

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