Our innovations in the bioeconomy create value for our businesses and support UPM renewal by creating new business opportunities using renewable and recyclable biomass. We enhance the competitiveness of existing businesses by finding solutions to increase resource efficiency, reduce costs and develop new products.
We develop new technologies and businesses in order to expand the future UPM portfolio. UPM is developing new businesses based on its extensive know-how and strong position in the forest biomass sourcing and processing value chain. We aim to use valuable and renewable forest biomass as responsibly and efficiently as possible.
An excellent example of responsible business practices in innovation processes is the UPM ecodesign concept that we have incorporated into our product and process development. For us, ecodesign means that we design and produce our products responsibly to be safe and sustainable, and we ensure that, whenever possible, the end of our products’ lifecycle is the birth of something new. We have developed innovative ways to reduce our own waste or residues and to be able to reuse them in smart new products – we see yesterday’s waste as today’s valuable raw material.
UPM actively protects inventions and brands with intellectual property rights. UPM manages and uses its patents, trademarks and other intellectual property rights throughout the world. Protected innovations and high level risk management is an integral part of the business model throughout UPM. UPM is also actively seeking partners and licensing opportunities to develop new technologies and solutions for its customers. UPM leaves approximately 350 patent applications annually. For example in Finland, UPM was granted over 50 patents in 2016, more than any other Finnish company.
Sustainability, resource efficiency and innovative products made from renewable resources are at the forefront driving UPM’s shift towards the bioeconomy. Different innovation needs are emphasised in different businesses. In existing businesses the focus is on cost savings and developing new services and new business models according to customer needs.
For new businesses we need to create new products and technologies or applications and means of commercialisation. At the moment UPM develops new bioeconomy-based businesses in three areas: biofuels, biocomposites and biochemicals.