SINGAPORE-BASED advanced-materials startup gush has raised close to S$4.7 million in a pre-Series A round to deepen its research and development (R&D) efforts and speed up its expansion in local and overseas markets.
Venture capital firm TNB Aura led the round. Also participating were investment company and venture builder Fidelium Group, joining as a follow-on investor; design group RSP Architects; TRIREC, an investment holding company focusing on renewable energy and clean technology; and individuals.
In a statement on Monday, TNB Aura co-founder and managing partner Vicknesh R Pillay said: "We have some of the largest developers and construction companies joining the round alongside strategic investors."
He added that the startup's team and its products are "uniquely positioned" to build a global brand.
Ryan Lim, gush's chief executive and co-founder, said the amount raised from the round will be used to enhance the startup's production capabilities, distribution breadth and speed, and R&D.
The fresh capital will also allow gush to develop more advanced-materials solutions beyond its flagship product - an air-purifying, cair interior paint that's free of volatile organic chemicals.
This product has been used in more than 1,700 residential projects and over 50 commercial projects, including Farrer Park Hospital and Changi Beach Club, gush said.
In addition to paint, gush's research includes other advanced materials. One project in the pipeline is an anti-thermal coating that reflects heat away from buildings when applied to surfaces. This will reduce the energy demand on active cooling especially in regions with hot climates, the startup said.
Lester Leong, gush chief financial officer and co-founder, said part of the proceeds from the pre-Series A round will be used to expand to other markets where there is an emphasis on environmental and sustainability issues, and where consumers are willing to pay a premium for its products.
"Some of our targeted markets also have a much higher do-it-yourself culture, and we hope to see promising retail sales volumes in these markets," Mr Leong added.
Back in July 2019, mainboard-listed property giant City Developments Limited had injected S$3 million into the startup in an earlier pre-Series A round.