Investing Non-Executive Directors (Non-Execs) are required for our client in the fast growing organic, natural pigments sector, where their proprietary technology creates colorants from agricultural waste in a circular process.

KAIKU produces 100% natural, organic colorants, and botanical ingredients that are derived from agricultural plant waste. The colorants are plant-based and use a circular economy system (from farm waste to lab, and back to farm field for the remaining biomass).  It represents a sustainable and scalable solution that is less energy intensive than traditional methods.

These colorants can be used in the skin care and cosmetics industry where demand is growing exponentially. They can also be used in the textiles and packaging industries and other sectors where there is a requirement for 100% natural colorants.

The company is looking to strengthen their Board with the appointment of three Non-Executive Directors with start-up / high growth experience to contribute to the development of the company. 

The Non-Executive Directors will be encouraged to become shareholders in the company to align the incoming Non-Execs’ interest with that of the Founder. 

Business Concept:

Our client was formed in 2019 at Imperial College London with the aim of providing an ecological vision for cosmetics, textiles & packaging that many consumers hope for.

  • The majority of colorants used in cosmetics are either synthetically derived from petrochemicals or sourced from countries with questionable labour practices.
  • Additionally, consumers are increasingly worried about potential negative health effects from synthetic colorants and desire more natural substitutes. 


Market & Opportunity:

  • KAIKU will occupy a unique market position as both a cosmetic brand and an ingredients manufacturer working primarily with waste-derived feedstocks.
  • Research suggests that Millennial and Gen X consumers are longing for clean, bio-based skincare (Mintel, 2020), and the UK market alone represents a £1.6bn opportunity by 2023 (Ethical Consumer, 2020).
  • The additional markets beyond cosmetics, such as textiles and packaging, provide further growth opportunities for KAIKU. 


Client Proposition: 

KAIKU is seeking an overall investment of circa £90,000 from investing Non-Executive Directors, which will be used for the development of the product, the infrastructure and the launch of the pilot. The duration of this phase will be 12 months. There are a number of grant opportunities they may seek to exploit and some of the funding raised may be used for the “match” requirement. KAIKU have solid enquiries from several existing Cosmetics brands for use of their organic colourants, details of which can be shared during the interview process.

Non-Exec Director Role Requirements/Expertise:

Kaiku is seeking Non-Execs with the following backgrounds / experience but may consider other relevant expertise as the person “fit” is as critical as their background:


Role 1132: Finance Non-Exec                                

  • CFO type experience in an early stage, fast growing business with a network in fundraising. 


Role 1133: Manufacturing Non-Exec                            

  • Expertise in Manufacturing ideally in an FMCG environment with experience in cosmetics and skincare sector. 


Role 1134: Biotech Non-Exec                                         

  • Experience in formulation chemistry ideally in relation to colour or colorants with an organic / natural background. 


Additional Requirements:

  • Experience as a statutory Director, preferably of a growth company (plc not necessary).
  • Suggested initial investment of £30k minimum.
  • Sufficient time to prepare well and attend Board and Strategy meetings.
  • It is expected that the roles will require approximately 2 days per month – more in the early stages. 


The Non-Execs will become a shareholder in the Company, aligning their interests with that of the Founder. The company is registered for the SEIS scheme which provides 50% tax relief and up to 100% capital gains relief subject to status.

Applying for the role: 

Candidates who feel they meet the above criteria are invited to apply, having first registered their CV with First Flight Non-Executive Directors (if they have not already done so – there is no charge) by using our “Apply for Role” tab for role no: 1132-1135 and completing the relevant application form explaining how they match the key criteria we have set out for the role. 

Closing Date: Monday, 10th May 2021

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