Every building project starts with digging out a large amount of excavation material, which later ends up in landfills. Due to its significant amount, excavation waste could directly replace construction materials such as sand, gravel and concrete that are becoming scarce and costly.
At the completion of his PhD program at the chair of sustainable construction on the development of self-compacting clay concrete, Gnanli Landrou embarked on his entrepreneurial journey and founded Oxara in 2019 to develop a chemical mixture that turns excavation waste into eco-friendly building material. Besides being eco-friendly, the solution will save the building industry millions in landfill costs.
By using Oxara’s technology companies will also reduce their carbon footprint. Currently, the construction industry accounts for around 30% of global CO2 emissions, 1/3 of global energy consumption and 50% of waste generated. The startup also promotes awareness on their new approach through teaching and knowledge transfer to local builders, architects and stakeholders, and this enables the company to address the needs of industry, the environment and local communities.
With his project, Gnanli benefited from the support of the ETH Pioneer fellowship program and Bridge Proof of Concept program after which he welcomed Thibault Demoulin. Today the company’s approach and solution for the construction industry continues to impress various juries. In less than a fortnight, the startup has won two awards: the Seif Awards and the W.A de Vigier award with a cash prize of CHF100’000.