Amcor has today announced the launch of Amcor Lift-Off, an open-call initiative aimed at supporting seed stage start-ups that are focused on innovative packaging solutions with an investment of US$250,000 for winners and optional guidance for scaling ideas.

Amcor says it is looking to partner with innovative start-ups that are working to create more sustainable packaging solutions, new packaging technologies, or have developed a new business model.

The Lift-Off initiative is open to applicants innovating in at least one of six strategic areas: recycling systems, alternative barriers, paper-based solutions, smart and connected packaging, biomaterials, or new industry business models.

Incorporated companies from anywhere in the world can apply for free, regardless of whether they have raised funds before. Applications for the Amcor Lift-Off programme will be open online until the 15th of May, 2022.

Applicants will then be screened and shortlisted, with up to 20 start-ups invited for a first call to pitch their ideas. In the next phase, five final start-ups will be invited to pitch in front of a team of senior Amcor leaders on the first Lift-Off day, slated for the end of June.

Based on the ideas pitched, Amcor is offering five finalists the chance to receive US$250,000 in the form of a convertible loan, as well as support and resources to refine their products, build partnerships, and scale across geographies.

Amcor adds that it is planning a second Lift-Off event in November 2022. Applications sent after the May deadline will be considered for this round.

Frank Lehmann, vice president of corporate venturing and open innovation at Amcor, comments: “As the global diversified packaging leader, Amcor is a firm believer in investing and developing early-stage, cutting-edge innovation around sustainability and digitization for the packaging industry.

“We look forward to establishing an ecosystem of start-ups to complement and amplify Amcor’s growth agenda and to further raise the bar and expectations on what can be achieved through innovative and more sustainable packaging.

“Our customers, and their consumers, want packaging solutions to evolve in line with societal expectations around sustainability, transparency and traceability – these solutions are the next generation of packaging and Amcor is bringing them to the forefront.”

Companies interested in the Amcor Lift-Off programme are invited to apply here.

Amcor says that its corporate venturing work is focused on investing in sustainable packaging solutions to drive long-term growth. Earlier this year, the company announced a US$5 million strategic investment in PragmatIC Semiconductor, a leading developer and manufacturer of ultra low-cost printed flexible electronics that can be embedded into packaging.