4 Minutes with…William Clary, CEO, PHYCO2

claryTell us about your company and it’s role in the Advanced Bioeconomy.  

PHYCO2 is engaged in the design and production of Algae Photo-Bioreactors (APB). The APB design is patented in the US and Canada. The design allows for the absorption of CO2 from fossil fuel combustion and algae growth from high efficiency LED’s to grow algae in volume and at competitive costs.

Tell us about your role and what you are focused on in the next 12 months.
My role in the company is to provide strategic oversight, business planning, and operational focus on the quantitative tests and evaluation of our design.

We expect to begin our testing in July 2015 with results later in the year to confirm the basic operation of our APB’s. This will be followed by system optimization and scalability studies. Our goal is to begin commercialization of our APB in 2016.

What do you feel are the most important milestones the industry must achieve in the next 5 years?
Cost parity with fossil fuel feedstocks
Financial stability of operating businesses

If you could snap your fingers and change one thing about the Advanced Bioeconomy, what would you change?
A global carbon tax or trading scheme for CO2.

Of all the reasons that influenced you to join the Advanced Bioeconomy industry, what single reason stands out for you as still being compelling and important to you?
It is a growth industry with exciting prospects and where our success benefits mankind.

Where are you from?
New England, specifically New Hampshire and Massachusetts

What was your undergraduate major in college, and where did you attend? Why did you choose that school and that pathway?
BA Chemistry, Carleton College, Northfield, MN. It was a strong academic college with Division III athletics.

Who do you consider your mentors – could be personal, business, or just people you have read about and admire. What have you learned from them?
Dr. David Kittelson – embrace new technologies, seek interdisciplinary associations.
Dr. Barry Cooper – playful and inquisitive with technology.
Rev. Hzdon Kafka – respect for people, empathy for their situation.
Mark Timmerman, Reijo Kuvaja – Sauna culture
Family – love of reading, discourse of all things – including religion and politics.
Bill Brandon, Henry David Thoreau – life is long, have some fun.

What’s the biggest lesson you ever learned during a period of adversity?
Stay positive to keep focused on the issues that are critical to your long term success.

What hobbies do you pursue, away from your work in the industry?
Tennis, Soccer, Hiking, Swimming, Gardening, Reading, Theatre, Music

What are 3 books you’d want to have with you, if you were stranded on a desert island.
The Mysterious Island – Jules Verne
The Discoverers – Daniel Boorstin
“How to catch and prepare fish, shellfish, and seaweed from a reef”

What books or articles (excluding The Digest) are on your reading list right now, or you just completed and really enjoyed?
Harvard Business Review
The Piano Tuner
The Book Thief
All the light we cannot see
The Beggar and the Hare

What’s your favorite city or place to visit, for a holiday?
Squam Lake, NH

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