Last updated on July 2nd, 2019 at 09:04 pm
Larry Grassmann and Pehr Anderson have established a new startup company, Dynamic Glass Products LLC, to distribute innovative glass technologies.
The pair established the business after meeting South Korean entrepreneur Jin ah Hwang of Livicon Co. Ltd., who came to Milwaukee in the fall with a delegation seeking U.S. partnerships and investment. Livicon makes a thin film using liquid crystal nanotechnologies, which is applied to glass and can be changed between clear and opaque. It could be applied to glass-walled conference rooms for privacy or to windows in a home to act as blinds. Dynamic Glass Products is a new company, founded in February, which has signed an exclusive distribution agreement with Livicon for the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean.
Anderson is chairman at Milwaukee-based Silicon Pastures Angel Investment Network, which organized the Korean entrepreneur visit. Until January, he was vice president of platform technology at Brookfield video interviewing technology startup HarQen LLC, and previously was in corporate development at Brown Deer-based Metavante Technologies Inc. Grassmann was most recently director of sales at Mequon-based custom skylight manufacturer Super Sky Products Enterprises LLC, and before that was vice president of sales and marketing at Muskego-based sliding glass door company NABCO Entrances.
“It’s a really exciting opportunity,” Grassmann said. “It’s an interesting technology. There are a handful of competitors in this space in North America, but not many. Additionally, there are just so many opportunities in new technologies within glass and glazing with privacy and changing the types of glazing technology in North America, so there’s a lot of things going on with glazing technology and we wanted to get into that.”
Dynamic Glass Products is based in the Technology Innovation Center in Wauwatosa’s Milwaukee County Research Park. The plan is to eventually begin distributing other glass technologies, such as glazing applications, Grassmann said. Livicon is a startup itself, established in 2014 and now with 17 employees, and is developing other new technologies Dynamic Glass could distribute.
“We don’t know 100 percent yet what other products would be, but building integrated photovoltaics are very interesting and very hot technology right now. Anything that has to do with helping the building run more efficiently, be it a commercial building or residential building,” Grassmann said.
Grassmann and Anderson are bootstrapping the startup, which is currently awaiting its first shipment of film from Livicon. It has about 1,000 square feet of space at the TIC and will do some light manufacturing to cut the film to size and attach the electronics to it.
“We are distributing to window film distributors; we’re also distributing to glass and glazing contractors,” Grassmann said. “The window film distributors and installers will then sell into commercial, residential and also automotive window film tinting markets.
“It’s really just an opportunity to start a business, to create jobs,” he said. “It’s an exciting opportunity to sell technology into the North American market that…we don’t see it out there frequently.”