UNCAGED Innovations, an SDC portfolio company, has raised a $2 million pre-seed round to launch the startup’s high-performance vegan leather, a next-generation material and sustainable alternative that protects animal welfare while delivering on luxury, feel, and durability.
The company is at the forefront of the alternative materials space and has been backed by leading firms alongside Stray Dog Capital, including Alwyn Capital, GlassWall Syndicate, and Jaguar Land Rover’s investment arm: InMotion Ventures.
CEO and Co-Founder of UNCAGED Innovations, Stephanie Downs, said “The current market landscape for alternative leathers relies heavily on plastic-based materials. Our technology platform enables us to fuse biodegradable elements that each provide unique characteristics, such as texture, strength, flexibility, water resistance, color, and fragrance. We can tune our formulation to meet different performance specifications.”
Utilizing a patent-pending process, UNCAGED combines nature and technology to create biomimetic substitutes for traditionally animal-based materials. The process is quick to scale, taking mere hours to produce leather alternatives, and fits within existing supply chains. It has also received widespread recognition with the company being awarded a National Science Foundation Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant to support the research and development of its unique technology.
With the recent round of funding, UNCAGED Innovations is poised to launch its high-performance material and enter the global leather goods market. This market was valued at $440.64 billion in 2022 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 6.7% to 738.61 billion in 2030.
“We’re thrilled to work with InMotion Ventures and Jaguar Land Rover to reimagine leather in the automotive industry. We’re proud to have leveraged just one percent of the funds raised by previous innovators to go from concept to full-scale production, giving us a competitive edge over our competitors,” said Downs.