Delft startup Loop Biotech, initiator and builder of the world’s first ‘living’ coffin, has raised an investment of €1 million from Dragons’ Den members and serial entrepreneurs Shawn Harris and Pieter Schoen. With this capital injection, founder Bob Hendrikx aims to realize plans for international expansion and scale up his company. He managed to convince the Dragons with his pitch at the latest episode of the Dutch version of Dragons’ Den.
The Living Cocoon is a groundbreaking, sustainable alternative for the traditional coffin. The invention contributes to efficient composting of the body, thus providing an enriched nutrient medium for trees and plants. Inventor, architect and designer Bob Hendrikx discovered the potential of mycelium – the root network of mushrooms – during his extensive material research at TU Delft. Mycelium converts both toxins as well as dead, organic materials into valuable nutrients for nature. It turned out to be the perfect material for, and therefore the driving force behind, the self-composting, natural coffin.
World-famous and ready for the next chapter
After launching their innovative product, Loop Biotech captured several headlines, including CNN, The Guardian, Dezeen and the BBC. In addition, they were showered with renowned prizes and nominations, notably The Earthshot Price, the Philips Innovation Award, the iF Design Award and the ASN Bank World Award. After gaining traction, the company is gearing up for a new stage of growth that includes global expansion. “With the capital raised, we can further develop our company and scale up our efforts, in addition to building a high-capacity factory,” says Hendrikx.
Support from Dutch Dragons Shawn Harris and Pieter Schoen
Investors and Dragons’ Den participants Shawn Harris and Pieter Schoen are jointly investing €1 million in Loop Biotech, representing 30% of the company’s shares. In terms of vision, their companies make a good fit, since both portfolios revolve around future-proof and innovative startups. “Loop Biotech’s sustainable, emission-reducing approach fits seamlessly with the formulas of our Orange Wings tribe,” says Orange Wings founder Shawn Harris. Her collaborative investment partner and Shoe Investments founder Pieter Schoen was motivated by the pioneering element of the company. “The Living Cocoon is truly my dream coffin; it really is a mind-blowing notion that my body can transform from dead fibers to new life!” he adds.
About Loop Biotech
Loop Biotech was founded in 2020 by Hendrikx with the intent of restoring balance with nature and innovating within the death-care industry. The company’s team consists of entrepreneurs, scientists, designers and engineers from different backgrounds. In addition, YES!Delft, Naturalis Biodiversity Institute, TU Delft, various advisors and former CEOs act in an advisory capacity. Loop Biotech recently started working with DELA, the largest funeral cooperative in the Netherlands.