Israeli mask maker Sonovia completes IPO, valuing NIS 9.15 a share

The SonoMask displayed an ability to neutralize the novel coronavirus at an effectiveness of more than 99% in trials performed by the ATCCR Laboratory.

Sonovia mask  (photo credit: COURTESY OF SONOVIA)
Sonovia mask
(photo credit: COURTESY OF SONOVIA)
Ramat Gan-based Israeli fabric maker and developer Sonovia has completed its initial public offering (IPO) following its success in developing the SonoMask, which has been lab tested to neutralize the novel coronavirus at an effectiveness of 99.34%.
Sonovia's offering was oversubscribed, attracting a total of NIS 55.9 million ($18.5 m.), of which NIS 35 million ($10.7 m.) will be liquidated in stocks to public investors to represent 25.9% of the company at NIS 9.15 a share. Sonovia raised an additional NIS 12 million ($3.7 m.) through a private offering.
The company was valued at NIS 94 million ($29 m.) before going public, with a NIS 141 million ($43.4 m.) post-money valuation. The textile and chemical solvent manufacturer will now be listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. Since the decision to go public centered around the development of its patented bacteria eliminating technology, which is thought to be where Sonovia will earn the bulk of its future capital, it will be traded as a technology company.
"Sonovia is a green impact company that strives to revolutionize the textile world and make it greener and safer for use," said chairman and CEO Joshua Herchcovici. "We are happy to receive the Israeli stock exchange’s vote of confidence in our company’s activity, which has been expressed through the high demand our company received from leading investors in the stock exchange."
The product behind the decision to go public, the SonoMask, displayed an ability to neutralize the novel coronavirus at an effectiveness of 99.34% in trials performed by Chinese ATCCR laboratory, the company announced in October.
Research conducted through a grant by the European Union, in conjunction with 16 partners from 10 European countries, also found the one-step process to be effective. Tests in the Microspectrum (Weipu Jishu) lab in Shanghai had demonstrated that the washable fabric used in its masks neutralized more than 90% of the coronavirus to which it was exposed.
Sonovia’s reusable anti-viral masks are coated in zinc oxide nanoparticles that destroy bacteria, fungi and viruses, which it says can help stop the spread of the coronavirus. Ultrasonic irradiation causes the formation of antimicrobial metal-oxide nanoparticles and actively impregnates them into textile fibers.
The company’s technology is based on a lab-scale sonochemical process that was developed at Bar-Ilan University. Sonovia started manufacturing its product in March at a plant near Nahariya – when Israel had only 200 Covid-19 patients – and now markets the product commercially. Sonovia says its clients include German manufacturers Bruckner and Weber Ultrasonics, and hospitals in Germany and the United States. The company also markets its products to private consumers via its online store.
Results from the most recent round of testing show that the mask has the ability to neutralize fallen traces of SARS-COV-2 within 30 minutes after making contact with the fabric. The SonoMask was also proven to maintain its protective properties throughout 55 wash cycles.
Sonovia also participated in trials with Adler Plastic in Italy earlier this year, working toward creating a solution for carpets and other types of fabrics. The company boasted a 99.999% efficiency rate against bacteria during the pilot testing round.
Furthermore, the Israeli fabric maker has attracted the cooperation of top brands such as Gucci, Chanel and Adidas, working on the Fashion for Good Plug and Play accelerator project – earning a $250,000 investment for their innovation.
"Sonovia has developed a leading technology which enables the production of eco-friendly textiles that have long-lasting anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties," Herchcovici concluded. "The IPO will strengthen our financial resilience as we realize the company’s R&D plans of new applications, the completion of the industrialization of the technology, and the move to first sales of our technology division."
Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman and Reuters contributed to this report.

Correction: Due to mistaken information provided by the company, an earlier version of this article claimed that the mask had been tested by the ATCC laboratory. The lab which tested the mask is called ATCCR.