Seeking Effective Means of Eliminating Malodours in the Air and/or on Surfaces

Background / Description

IPI is working with our Open Innovation partner from UK to source for effective means of eliminating malodours for consumer products.

This client is an established manufacturer of a range of consumer products in Europe, continually searching for ways to enhance their users’ enjoyment of their products and the environment they are used in. For many consumers, improving the air space they live, travel and work in has become more important, and using traditional air fresheners are no longer sufficient, with a more effective, ‘invisible’, even natural solution being required. Such solutions can be applied to consumer products to ensure the perception of clean air, or be used to refresh the environment around the consumer when odours are apparent.

The client is searching for new and effective means of eliminating malodours in the air and/or on surfaces (e.g. prevent the smell from lingering on clothes or skin), as residue can be deposited from the odours and easily trapped in materials. Whilst many manufacturers solve this with simple masking of the compounds with fragrances, our client is specifically looking for a solution which can trap the malodour when it is released and convert it into another compound; hence eliminating the malodour and not allowing it to resurface when the masking agent has worn off.

Technical Specifications

Innovative chemistry-based solutions that enable a variety of odours to be neutralised—this could be for use in the user’s car, home (e.g. kitchen/bathroom), workplace, etc. These could be reactive (to remove current smells) or preventative (prevent smells adhering) and sourced from (but not limited to) the following:-

  • Technologies using:
    • Neutralisation
    • Encapsulation
    • Adsorption and absorption
    • Odour conjugation
    • Compounds such as cyclodextrins, cucurbiturils, zeolites, cationic resins, etc.
  • Sectors:
    • Chemistry development companies specialising in encapsulation technologies (e.g. for drug delivery)
    • Filter manufacturers (cars, extraction units, etc.)
    • FMCG laundry/air freshener to treat sports odour, cooking smells, smoking, pet odours
    • Landfill, agricultural, waste management, etc.


Any suitable solution should be:-

  • Applicable for use on demand and/or applied as part of the manufacturing process, i.e.
    • Spraying into the air or onto a surface as required, or to refresh an existing treated product, or
    • Applied to a surface (e.g. porous materials such as paper, textiles, non-wovens) by impregnation, liquid treatment or coating during manufacturing
  • Available for testing or at least samples for proof of concept by the client
  • Have some intellectual property (IP) or secret knowhow to protect the solution
  • A non-irritant to skin and eyes


The client is interested in potential providers to customise a technology for their individual applications (e.g. modify from a current industrial or commercial application). The company is willing to work with a wide variety of partners to deliver innovation into their product range. Private label opportunities are particularly interesting, as the client requires the functionality, but does not need to acquire the brand or compete with existing applications. The company is willing to consider all forms of collaboration, including licensing, joint development, etc., but may require exclusivity for some key consumer markets (to be shared once in direct contact). The client’s products are manufactured and sold worldwide, and so this offers an excellent commercial opportunity to increase revenue for any suitable technology.

Preferred Business Model

  • R&D Collaboration
  • Licensing
  • IP Acquisition
  • Business Collaboration (Joint Venture, Distribution)

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