Emerging graphene-based product developer Sparc Technologies (ASX: SPN) has announced the appointment of experienced inventor Don Darkin to the role of strategic advisor for new technologies.
Mr Darkin is a former executive of multibillion-dollar California-based digital health company ResMed (ASX: RMD) and has a strong track record of success in developing new technologies from early-stage research through to commercialisation.
Sparc executive chairman Stephen Hunt said Mr Darkin’s addition to the team will be an “enormous benefit” to the company given his track record at ResMed and beyond.
“His depth of knowledge and experience in the commercialisation of new technologies is highly regarded worldwide, and to gain this level of expertise is a major coupe for the company, demonstrating confidence in Sparc’s pipeline of new technologies and solutions,” he said.
Mr Darkin joined ResMed, which develops medical devices for the treatment of respiratory conditions including sleep apnoea and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, in 1999 as the vice president of product development.
He subsequently served as vice president of business divisions and senior vice president of global product development, before moving on to the position of president of innovation and operations from 2014 to 2016. He then remained with the company until 2019 in an advisory capacity.
In Mr Darkin’s time at ResMed, the company grew from a US$400 million (A$538 million) market capitalisation to more than US$30 billion (A$40 billion) today with revenues exceeding US$3 billion (A$4 billion).
According to Sparc, Mr Darkin was instrumental in delivering several pioneering and innovative solutions and new technologies to market and has been identified as an inventor or co-inventor on 81 granted patents worldwide.
“Don will advise the board on all aspects of strategy and product development across existing projects and significantly, he will help guide the company with new innovative opportunities,” Mr Hunt said.
Mr Darkin’s background also includes a mechanical engineering education in the United Kingdom and further professional management training at the University of New South Wales and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Readmission to the ASX
The South Australian company made its debut on the ASX in late November via the reverse takeover by former listed coal developer Acacia Coal.
As part of its readmission to the ASX, the company announced a public offer to raise $4 million through the issue of 20 million shares at $0.20 each.
Sparc is focused on commercialising graphene-based technologies – licenced from its substantial shareholder, the University of Adelaide – targeting large industrial markets for marine and protective coatings and environmental remediation.