Get To Know Urbix, Inc.

Dr. Andrea Cabrero Vilatela

Chief Innovation Officer

Andrea has a PhD from the University of Cambridge where she specialized in graphene. Before joining Urbix, she started a company developing intelligent clothing for health monitoring and performance optimization working with professional sports teams across Europe. Her startup was recognized globally as one of the top 50 startups in wellbeing by Hello Tomorrow; won the Nokia Open Innovation Challenge 2017 and was awarded an Innovate UK grant. Andrea has a strong belief in driving change to improve the lives of people through innovation, technology and education.

Andrea first joined the Urbix, Inc team in May of 2018 serving as Executive Director of Latin America/European operations. Today she serves as both a member of the board and Chief Innovation Officer (CIO). As CIO at Urbix, Inc., Andrea works with the CTO and R&D team to develop new products and improve existing technologies. In addition, Andrea is responsible for understanding customer needs for to-be manufactured products and of Urbix raw graphite supply chain.

At Urbix, we are disrupting the status-quo for a sustainable future. We are excited to be part of the electrification of the world starting with our battery grade graphite for electric vehicles. Our products will enable batteries to be more environmentally friendly, last longer and store more energy. And this is just the beginning...

-- Dr. Andrea Cabrero Vilatela, Director of Research & Development
  • Board member Gates Cambridge Alumni Association and Cambridge Alumni Mexico A.C.
  • Flamenco dancing and teaching
  • Tutoring; travelling & discovering new places
  • Being outdoors; reading
  • President of the Board of AMS Schools (2018-present)
  • Board member of Tucson Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (2013-2014)
  • Arizona Model United Nations (AMUN) 2008-2009
  • Society of Professional Hispanic Engineers (SHPE) 2004-2008
  • Arizona Master’s Swimming Team (Ford Aquatics) 2009
  • Chair of Arizona United Nations’ Organization of American States (OAS) 
  • Spring 2009 Conference
  • Society of Civil Engineers (SCE) 2005-2007
  • MERITS (Maximum Educational Results in Two Semesters) 2004-2006  

Academic History

PhD in nanoscience/nanotechnology 

Dissertation: Catalytic graphene growth and transfer for applications 

The project involved:

  • Preparation of samples for industry collaborators (Philips)
  • Presentation of results at European project meetings (GRAFOL) 

Side projects: 

  • Co-director, Gates Cambridge Learning for Purpose Program: redesigned the program, developed the website and administered budget 
  • Executive committee member, Global Scholars Symposium 2015: managed the logistics team (8 people) and delivered a successful 4-day symposium 14% under budget  
  • Director of Operations, CUTEC (Cambridge University Technology and Enterprise Club): organized the Technology Ventures Conference (one of the largest non-profit student-led entrepreneurship conferences in the world) and led the operations team (24 people)

MPhil in Micro & Nanotechnology Enterprise 

Dissertation: Carbon nanotube (CNT) based wires for extreme environments 

  • Consultancy project for Tonejet: generated innovative business concepts for its digital printer 
  • Elected student representative of the program

Bachelor in Physics Engineering (Hons., highest GPA) 

Dissertation: Heart cells regeneration and biocompatibility with CNT scaffolds 

  • Designed the implementation of eco-techniques and alternative energy systems to the National Commission of Natural Protected Areas (Mexican Government) for community centers in Mexico 
  • Exchange student at the National Institute of Astrophysics, Optics and Electronics (summer 2007) and at the Science and Technology Potosino Institute (IPICyT), Mexico (summer 2008)

Professional Experience

Urbix Inc, Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Chief Innovation Officer

  • Understand customer expectations on to-be manufactured products 
  • Direct projects with budget approvals, scheduling, and deadline management 
  • Attract, develop and retain top talent for the R&D function 
  • Work with lawyers and/or scientists, as required, to write/submit patentable inventions 
  • Lead the R&D team to develop new products and improve existing technologies 
  • Work closely with other teams within the company – such as sales and operations – to bring new products form R&D to market or implementation within the organization
Jan 2020 – present

Urbix Inc, Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Board Member

Apr 2020 - present

Urbix Inc, Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Executive Director

  • Proposed and established a standardized process to evaluate and prioritize projects (project charter) 
  • Collaborated with the technical team to complete the project charter for selected R&D ideas 
Jan 2019 – Dec 2019

Urbix Inc, Phoenix, Arizona, USA

Executive Director – Latin America/European operations 

  • Identified, contacted and developed relationships with potential customers to understand interests
May - Dec 2018

Victoria 147, Mexico City, Mexico Feb – Nov 2020

Business academy for entrepreneurs, focused on empowering women to start or grow their businesses Fellow.

  • Taught a module on “Business models” and worked closely with entrepreneurs to revise strategy
Feb – Nov 2020

Continuum Technologies Ltd, London, UK


Applied nanotechnology for smart materials 

  • Devised proof of concept of intelligent clothing for health monitoring & sports performance optimization
  • Raised seed funding and went through a successful Series A funding round
  • Collaborated with professional sports teams and other potential customers to develop the product 
Jan 2017 – Dec 2018

SimPrints, Cambridge, UK


Mobile biometrics for development (start-up company) 

  • Designed and executed a project on benchmarking of world-class human resources, including literature review, desk research, interviews and proposal of new benefits to keep team motivated and engaged 
Dec 2014 – Apr 2015

Sparrho, Cambridge, UK

Marketing campaign leader

Personalized recommendation platform for scientific content (start-up company) 
Led a marketing campaign in Cambridge to launch new website
Achieved 700 new users in two weeks and 3000 users in eight weeks

Sep 2013 - Oct 2014

University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

Demonstrator and Supervisor, Engineering Department

  • Supported 1st and 3rd year students in learning sequential logic and semiconductor engineering
Sep 2013 – Oct 2014

Comunidad Educativa Tomas Moro School, Mexico City, Mexico

Mathematics and Physics Teacher 

  • Taught middle school students with learning disabilities and special education needs
2010 - 2011

Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City, Mexico

Researcher, Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Laboratory

  • Optimized synthesis of carbon nanotube scaffolds 
Aug – Dec 2010 

Materials Science and Nanoengineering Department, Rice University, Houston, USA

May - Jul 2010

Summer Internship “Optimization of graphene and CNT growth”, “Art exhibition: large surface of CNTs” 

Polymeric Materials Laboratory, Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City, Mexico 2009 

Gas permeability measurement of polymer membranes modified with 6FDA 

Materials Science and Metallurgy Department, University of Cambridge, UK Aug - Dec 2008 

“Microrheology and thermodynamic study of nanofluids”, ”Viscosity and thermal conductivity measurements of CNT dispersed in water and oil” 

Nanoscience & Nanotechnology Lab, Universidad Iberoamericana, Mexico City, Mexico 2006 - 2007 

“Synthesis of CNTs”

  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, JA Alexander-Webber, AA Sagade, AI Aria, P Braeuninger-Weimer, MB Martin, RS Weatherup and S Hofmann. Atomic layer deposited oxide films as protective interface layers for integrated graphene transfer, Nanotechnology, 28, 485201 (2017) 
  • JA Alexander-Webber, AA Sagade, AI Aria, ZA Van Veldhoven, P Braeuninger-Weimer, R Wang, A Cabrero-Vilatela, MB Martin, J Sui, MR Connolly and S Hofmann. Encapsulation of graphene transistors and vertical device integration by interface engineering with atomic layer deposited oxide. 2D materials, 4, 011008, (2017) 
  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, RS Weatherup, P Braeuninger-Weimer, S Caneva and S Hofmann. Towards a general growth model for graphene CVD on transition metal catalysts. Nanoscale, 8, 2149, (2016) 
  • S Caneva,RS Weatherup,BC Bayer,R Blume,A Cabrero-Vilatela,P Braeuninger- Weimer, MB Martin, R Wang, C Baehtz, R Schloegl, JC Meyer, and S Hofmann. Controlling Catalyst Bulk Reservoir Effects for Monolayer Hexagonal Boron Ni- tride CVD. Nano Letters 16, 1250 (2016) 
  • JOD Williams, JA Alexander-Webber, JS Lapington, M Roy, IB Hutchingson, AA Sagade, MB Martin, P Braeuninger-Weimer, A Cabrero-Vilatela, R Wang, A De Luca, Florin Udrea and S Hofmann, Towards a graphene-based low intensity photon counting photodetector, Sensors 16 9, (2016) 
  • RS Weatherup, L DArsie, A Cabrero-Vilatela, S Caneva, R Blume, J Robertson, R Schloegl and S Hofmann. Long-Term Passivation of Strongly Interacting Metals with Single-Layer Graphene. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 137, 14358 (2015) 
  • MM Qasim, AA Khan, A Kostanyan, PR Kidambi, A Cabrero-Vilatela, P Braeuninger-Weimer, DJ Gardiner, S Hofmann and TD Wilkinson. Hybrid graphene nematic liquid crystal light scattering device. Nanoscale 7, (2015) 
  • S Sanders, A Cabrero-Vilatela, PR Kidambi, JA Alexander-Webber, C Wei-jtens, P Braeuninger-Weimer, AI Aria, MM Qasim, TD Wilkinson, J Robertson, S Hofmann and J Meyer. Engineering high charge transfer n-doping of graphene electrodes and its application to organic electronics. Nanoscale 7, 13135 (2015) 
  • S Caneva, RS Weatherup, BC Bayer, B Brennan, SJ Spencer, K Mingard, A Cabrero-Vilatela, C Baehtz, AJ Pollard, and S Hofmann. Nucleation Control for Large, Single Crystalline Domains of Monolayer Hexagonal Boron Nitride via Si-Doped Fe Catalysts. Nano Letters 15 1867 (2015) 
  • M Kratzer, BC Bayer, PR Kidambi, A Matkovic, R Gajic, A Cabrero-Vilatela, RS Weatherup, S Hofmann and C Teichert. Effects of polymethylmethacrylate- transfer residues on the growth of organic semiconductor molecules on chemical vapor deposited graphene. Applied Physics Letters 106 103101 (2015) 
  • C Williams, Y Montelongo, JO Tenorio-Pearl, A Cabrero-Vilatela, S Hofmann, WI Milne, TD Wilkinson. Engineered pixels using active plasmonic holograms with liquid crystals. Phys. Status Solidi RRL 9 125, (2015) 
  • BC Bayer, C Baehtz, PR Kidambi, RS Weatherup, C Mangler, J Kotakoski, CJL Goddard, S Caneva, A Cabrero-Vilatela, JC Meyer and S Hofmann. Nitrogen controlled iron catalyst phase during carbon nanotube growth. Applied Physics Letters 105 143111, (2014) 
  • RS Weatherup, H Amara, R Blume, B Dlubak, BC Bayer, M Diarra, M Bahri, A Cabrero-Vilatela, S Caneva, PR Kidambi, MB Martin, C Deranlot, P Seneor, R Schloegl, F Ducastelle, C Bichara and S Hofmann. Interdependency of Subsurface Carbon Distribution and Graphene-Catalyst Interaction. J. Am. Chem. Soc 136 13698, (2014) 
  • D Janas, A Cabrero-Vilatela, J Bulmer, L Kurzepa, KK Koziol, Carbon nanotube wires for high-temperature performance, Carbon, 64, (2013) 
  • D Janas, A Cabrero-Vilatela, KK Koziol, Performance of carbon nanotube wires in extreme conditions, Carbon, 62, (2013) 

  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, RS Weatherup, R Blume, C Baehtz, BC Bayer, S Caneva, PR Kidambi, R Schlogl and S Hofmann, Achieving graphene growth on transition metal catalysts using in-situ studies, International conference on diamond and carbon materials (Sept 2014) 
  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, RS Weatherup, S Caneva, P Braeuninger-Weimer and S Hofmann, Monolayer graphene formation on transition metal catalysts, Graphene and 2D materials international conference and exhibition (Graphene Canada, Oct 2015)
  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, RS Weatherup, S Caneva, P Braeuninger-Weimer and S Hofmann, Monolayer graphene formation on transition metal catalysts, Materials Reaserch Society – MRS Spring (April 2015) 
  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, AI Aria, S Hofmann, Fabrication and characterisation of graphene for applications in flexible electronics, Cambridge (Jan 2015)
  • A Cabrero-Vilatela, S Hofmann, Monolayer graphene formation on transition metal catalysts, NanoDTC showcase (Jan 2016) 

Our Team

Meet the rest of our team and learn more about us.