New member Tekkoo grows circular and impact enterprises


New member Tekkoo aims to grow circular and impact businesses in the seaweed sector. The circular economy innovator does this not only by mentoring these businesses, but by actually participating in the seaweed sector.

Can you tell us more about Tekkoo?

"Tekkoo consists of a group of experienced innovation enthusiasts who can help companies in the circular economy to grow further," explains Alexander Ebbing. "Many companies, start-ups and cooperatives want to contribute to a new sustainable economy. But they often face major barriers to actually making this transition. Tekkoo helps to overcome these barriers. Often each aspect of these barriers has its own specific challenges and innovation potential".

Tekkoo was founded in 2015 by Lindy Hendsen and Bas van Wieringen. In 2021 they merged with Outsice Inc. from Mathijs Koper. The Tekkoo team has a lot of experience in setting up innovation projects and programmes that deliver concrete new business value: from new products and applications to new (corporate) ventures. Based on this capability, they have structured their way of working and intervention in three approaches: 1. Execute, 2. Learn, 3. Co-create.

Many different facets are covered, with the same goal: to grow circular and meaningful businesses.

Tekkoo also wants to share its expertise with the seaweed sector. They will do this by becoming actively involved in the seaweed sector themselves. By being active in the seaweed sector, they can teach others. The lessons learnt will be transferred to new entrepreneurs in the sector.

(credits: Jacqueline Fuijkschot)

What are the latest developments within Tekkoo?

Alexander explains that Industry Activation is a new branch within Tekkoo. In addition to doing this for companies, Tekkoo is also working for Building Balance. "This is a big government initiative around bio-based building materials to create new crop chains in the Netherlands, such as elephant grass or hemp, and then process them into building materials. To create this chain (from crop to end product), industry activators and value chain developers are needed. We have the ambition to also make a difference in the seaweed sector.

Another project Tekkoo is working on is the quarter mast for sea farming. By bringing this to Rotterdam, they want to make sure that it has as positive an impact as possible on the seaweed ecosystem in the Netherlands.

Tekkoo has so far mainly focused on Dutch companies, but is also open to working with organisations elsewhere in Europe.

Why seaweed?

Alexander from Tekkoo sees seaweed as a special crop. "I know of no crop that is more sustainable than seaweed. It does not need fresh water, land or fertiliser, and there are other advantages. It is the only crop that has a positive impact on the environment.

He continues, "The magic of seaweed is that during cultivation it has a stimulating effect on biodiversity in its immediate environment. Outside, we need to see if this is true on a large scale. If so, the positive implications are huge and offer many prospects and solutions for the future. Moreover, seaweed is easily scalable. All this makes algae very special.”

(credits: Wijnand van Till)

Why does Tekkoo want to join NSF?

Alexander sees the NSF as a hub for the seaweed sector. A stepping stone for start-ups and a gathering place for knowledge and experience.

 "It is nice to have a stable partner organisation that gives recognition to the seaweed industry. In addition, a lot of knowledge has been accumulated within NSF over the years and the organisation consists of a large network," says Alexander, who has been involved with NSF since its inception. "So we see NSF as very important now and in the future as a point of contact and a repository of knowledge and experience. We hope that, together with NSF, we can build up the seaweed sector and use NSF to its full potential, while using NSF as a focal point".

What can other NSF members turn to Tekkoo for?

"Members can turn to Tekkoo to further develop their seaweed innovations and address innovation and new business challenges." Alexander says. "This increases the chances of success and long-term impact. Tekkoo has experts who can help a company accelerate new business development or assist in setting up future-proof innovations and ventures. They have gained this experience from other circular economy projects and want to apply it to the seaweed industry. In addition to the experts, Tekkoo also has a network that "hooks in".

(credits: Jacqueline Fuijkschot)