In order to accelerate the valorization of lignin, a form of biomass now burnt as a waste stream in paper pulp and cellulosic ethanol plants, Vertoro or ‘green gold’ aims to create a new globally tradeable commodity, crude lignin oil (CLO). The lignin-to-CLO conversion technology involved has been developed within the InSciTe project Lignin RICHES, of which Vertoro is a spin-out. Our vision is that CLO will be to the biobased economy what Android has become for the mobile device industry, a disruptive platform product for which countless ‘apps’ are developed by other market parties. In the case of CLO, examples of applications currently under development include, phenol, phenolic resins, octane boosters for gasoline, and low sulfur marine fuel. By positioning ourselves in this way in the value chain, we believe demand for CLO will increase rapidly, owing to both a first mover advantage and network effects.