It is with regret that we announce the departure of Merlin Allan from the Board of Ionic Industries. Merlin has played an invaluable role in the development of our company over the past two years however, for personal reasons, is heading back to the United Kingdom. We would like to thank him for his service to the company and look forward to his ongoing involvement as a shareholder and ambassador for the company.
As Alexander Graham Bell said, “when one door closes another opens” and we are delighted to announce the appointment of Chris Gilbey OAM to the Ionic board. Chris has a long history in entrepreneurial pursuits founding and building IP-based businesses. He was CEO of digital signal processing company, Lake Technology (ASX) before selling Lake to Dolby Labs (NYSE). He then consulted to Dolby, helping build their consumer electronics licensing business activities in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and China. After Dolby he became Entrepreneur in Residence at the ARC Centre of Excellence in Electromaterials Science where he was responsible for spinning out a hydrogen technology venture that has recently re-located to the US. Most recently, Chris co-founded the Australian Graphene Industry Association, to help promote and facilitate the development of graphene technologies developed by Australian companies.
Chris currently serves (and will continue to serve) as the CEO and Executive Chairman of Imagine Intelligent Materials Limited. Imagine built the first commercial graphene manufacturing plant in Australia and has pioneered the development of conductive coatings using graphene. They were the first to develop leak detection solutions in geotextiles using graphene. Imagine’s approach is to develop solutions and materials that can be deployed into existing manufacturing processes and supply chains with a certification process that ensures replicability and consistency, ensuring users will trust the product. Chris has built valuable relationships with research groups at universities in Australia and beyond, including Swinburne University, Deakin, RMIT, CSIRO, the University of Wollongong and the University of Oklahoma, and with ARENA2036 at the University of Stuttgart. Imagine’s graphene plant was the recipient of the Innovation, Research and Development Award from Engineers Australia for 2016.
Chris’s past experience at Imagine very closely resembles the journey Ionic is now working through and we look forward to drawing on his expertise in the graphene industry to drive progress on the commercialisation of our own graphene technologies. Chris brings with him a wealth of sales and marketing nous, strategic vision in the start-up space and unique experience in building businesses based on collaboration and innovation. These are all attributes that will greatly benefit Ionic as we move into the next phase of our evolution looking to near-term commercial outcomes from some of our technologies.