Arsenal midfielder Mathieu Flamini surprised everyone when he announced that he was one of the founders of a biochemical company that could change the face of energy industry.
The Frenchman had spent millions to fund the research, find and equip a factory in Italy and run the costly trials that lasted years.
He worked together with co-fouder Pasquale Granata and set up GF Biochemicals while playing for AC Milan back in 2008.
Recounting the origins of his venture, he explained: “GF stands for Granata-Flamini. At the start we wanted the name of the company to be Green Futures.”
“I was always close to nature and concerned about environmental issues, climate change and global warming.”
“He (Granata) was on the same wavelength. We were looking how we could make a contribution to the problem.”
“After a while we found out about Levulinic Acid (LA). It’s a molecule identified by the US Department of Energy as one of the 12 molecules with the potential to replace petrol in all its forms.”
Flamini added: “Researchers told us LA is the future and by doing research in that field we could come up with a great discovery and success.”
The former French national only revealed that he was working on the project after the organization was announced as the first company in the world to mass produce LA, which is assumed to be able to replace oil in all its forms.
“Not even my family knew anything about it. My parents did not know about it until about a year ago” he said.
“To me, it was an escape. A football career is made of ups and downs” he continued.
However this revelation could easily bring a new era in the energy industry, as LA is able to replace oil in bio fuel, plastics, cosmetics and even food preservatives.