HELSINKI /PRNewswire/ -- Canatu Oy, a leading-edge nanotechnology company commercializing carbon nanomaterial thin films for the electronics, optics, and energy sectors, announced a $12 million investment round led by Troika Ventures with participation from the existing investors Inventure Ltd., Infosto Ltd., and Tekes. Canatu's first products are flexible, robust, and environmentally friendly transparent conductor films and touch sensors.
"We at Canatu are delighted to welcome Troika Ventures to our team and to have Inventure and Infosto reinvest. All are proven and well respected investors whose collective experience and energy will be invaluable in driving our business", said Risto Vuohelainen, CEO of Canatu. "Canatu is one of the world's most promising nanotechnology companies providing disruptive technology to fast-growing global touch sensor and display markets. We believe that Canatu will play a significant role in the future display industry", says Artyom Yukhin, the Managing Director of Troika Ventures.
Canatu plans to use the funding to finalize its volume manufacturing line for conductive films and touch sensors in Helsinki, Finland. The company also plans to add significantly more resources to key business development activities. "This funding allows us to provide our customers the needed manufacturing capacity," CEO Vuohelainen continues. "We can now take quick initiative to meet customer expectations and also to add local presence near our customers. And with the financial resources of Troika behind us, we will be ready for fast scale-up to larger-volume production when customers need us to. This could be the case in 2014."
Former Nokia CTO Yrjo Neuvo has been an early investor in Canatu and has served on the company's Board of Directors since 2008. Professor Neuvo considers companies like Canatu essential for the future of the consumer electronics industry. "I am very excited about the innovation opportunities Canatu's technologies offer to manufacturers of modern digital age devices, where usability, design, and innovative form factors play a crucially important role," says Neuvo.
In recent years, touch user interfaces have been one of fastest trends to penetrate the consumer electronics industry. Touch screens became popular after Apple launched its first iPhone in June 2007. Today, most mobile devices from the world's major manufacturers use touch screens. MS Windows 8–driven laptops and all-in-one devices are bringing touch screens to even larger sizes and desktop use. The latest emerging industry trend is wearable devices with touch.