Heriot-Watt spinout brings home sustainable business award




Heriot-Watt spinout company Kenoteq, inventor of a brick made from more than 90% construction waste material, received the Circular Scotland Award at the VIBES Awards last week.

A record breaking 422 applicants applied to this year’s VIBES Scottish Environment Business Awards which are held annually to recognise and showcase best practice.

Presented by Iain Gulland of Zero Waste Scotland, the Circular Scotland Award recognises a business that can demonstrate a circular approach in its materials and can demonstrate how its product addresses the circular economy.

Kenoteq was set up by co-founders Professor Gabriela Medero and Dr Sam Chapman in 2019 after more than a decade of research into sustainable building materials and practices at Heriot-Watt University.

Professor Gabriela Medero, Associate Principal for Enterprise at Heriot-Watt University and co-founder of Kenoteq said: “This award represents a huge collective effort to develop Kenoteq as a business that is wholly committed to a circular economy approach. Awards like this are important as they help to shine a light on the potential of academic research and how projects that begin in the lab can create significant societal benefit. In my enterprise role, I am helping to inspire both students and academics to pursue the commercial potential of their creative ideas and research. As a university, we are well equipped to drive entrepreneurship forward because of our ability to foster productive partnerships alongside our impressive talent pipeline.

“The K-Briq itself has successfully driven ‘sustainability in construction’ into the public consciousness and we are now working in partnership with the construction, architectural and design industries to support their shared ambitions in the drive to net zero. We’ll shortly be rolling out production from our new commercial facility just outside Edinburgh and we hope to scale up operations across the UK in future years.”

The K-Briq recently won the prestigious public vote in Dezeen’s Sustainability Awards (Sustainable Design of the Year).


Annie Pugh