Sustainability Press Release

MATERI'ACT inaugurates its world-class R&D center to develop the materials of tomorrow

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At the cutting edge of technology, this center brings together engineers, researchers and data scientists, and is destined to become a world-class center of excellence, and one of Europe's leading centers in the field of materials with very low CO2 footprints.

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One year after its creation, MATERI'ACT, a company of the FORVIA Group, the world's 7th-largest automotive technology supplier, inaugurated its Headquarters and R&D center in Villeurbanne (France) on November 13, in the presence of Luc Chatel, former Minister and Chairman of the Plateforme Automobile, Gilbert-Luc Devinaz, Senator for the Rhône, Sophie Blachère, Regional Councillor for Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, Emeline Baume, 1st Vice-President of the Metropole de Lyon and Philippe Valentin, President of the Lyon Saint-Etienne Roanne Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Materials enabling CO2 reduction of up to 85% by 2030

Transitioning to zero-emission mobility is a major challenge for the automotive industry. FORVIA is the first French company and the first automotive industry player in the world to have its net-zero emission roadmap approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), in June 2022, with a goal of reaching net-zero emissions across all scopes by 2045.

As the spearhead of FORVIA’s net-zero roadmap, MATERI’ACT’s mission is to accelerate the development, production and commercialization of new materials with low CO2 footprints for all industries and particularly the automotive industry,

By way of illustration, MATERI'ACT's new plastics will have around 70% recycled content by 2030 for new automotive programs.

Over the past 10 years, FORVIA has been developing NAFILean, a range of biocomposite materials incorporating help fibers (thus reducing both weight and CO2 footprint while maintaining the product’s physical properties) and recycled plastics. This product range equips more than 9 million vehicles already on the road, with plans to accelerate to 15 million vehicles by 2025.

MATERI'ACT brings together an entire ecosystem to develop and produce the next generation of low-CO2 materials:

From waste and raw materials management to the supply of sustainable materials, through to their formulation using artificial intelligence, MATERI'ACT secures its raw materials supplies while consolidating its technical and industrial capabilities. MATERI'ACT has already forged partnerships with INTERVAL, VEOLIA, ANANAS ANAM and PLASTIC ODYSSEY, among others.

“Following the inauguration of FORVIA's industrial platform in Allenjoie, designed to boost the development of zero-emission hydrogen mobility, FORVIA is now inaugurating the MATERI'ACT R&D center in Villeurbanne, which is destined to become a world-class center of excellence in the field of low-carbon materials. These two centers bear witness to our firm commitment to working towards sustainable low-carbon mobility and strengthening French industrial competitiveness,” said Patrick Koller, Chief Executive Officer of FORVIA. “For over 10 years, FORVIA has been investing in materials with low CO2 footprints. Today, the group is scaling up with MATERI'ACT. The R&D center aims to become a world-class center of excellence for the formulation of recycled and bio-sourced materials. It will support the necessary transformation of the automotive industry by creating jobs in a promising sector,” he adds.”

Patrick Koller
Chief Executive Officer of FORVIA

“Rethinking the way we design, produce and use our products is a necessary step towards achieving net-zero in the automotive industry and combating global warming. The sustainable transformation of our businesses is not just about reducing negative impacts on the planet, but also about creating a sustainable and profitable ecosystem. With MATERI'ACT, we aim to develop innovative materials and solutions while making a positive contribution to industry, society and the environment.”

Jean-Paul Michel
Executive Vice-President, Interiors at FORVIA

Anchored at the heart of France, aimed for a global reach

MATERI'ACT has set up its head office and R&D center in Villeurbanne, in the immediate vicinity of Lyon's La Doua campus. The 7,500 sqm building houses MATERI'ACT's offices and its materials prototyping and characterization laboratory. A 2,000 sqm hub will bring together innovative companies, and in particular start-ups, operating in the field of sustainable development and materials. MATERI'ACT will host and support these start-ups, from incubation through to acceleration, while fostering collaborations to accelerate industry's ecological transition.

MATERI'ACT currently employs nearly 100 people. It will have 400 employees by 2025 and aims to achieve sales of € 2 bn by 2030.

“MATERI'ACT's location at the heart of a dynamic region and ecosystem is a key success factor for our company. The proximity of centers of excellence such as Vallée de la Chimie and Plastic Valley, of several competitive clusters, and a dynamic innovation drive focused on start-ups, are real assets. The presence of renowned higher education and research institutions and the local life quality also facilitate the recruitment of our future talents and the development of our expertise.”

Rémi Daudin
President of MATERI’ACT

In line with the company’s environmental convictions, MATERI'ACT's building has been rehabilitated and awarded the BBC Rénovation environmental label. The fit-out project also follows an eco-friendly approach, with all furniture being reused and re-conditioned. The aim is to limit the company's impact and footprint on the environment.

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