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Solvay announces strategic collaboration with Ginkgo Bioworks

Solvay announces strategic collaboration with Ginkgo Bioworks

News 13.04.2023

Solvay, a leading science and materials company whose technologies bring benefits to many aspects of daily life, today announced a strategic collaboration with Ginkgo Bioworks, which is building the leading platform for cell programming and biosecurity. Through this multi-year strategic collaboration agreement, Solvay will join forces with Ginkgo to unlock the power of synthetic biology as an enabler of more sustainable chemicals and materials, contributing to the transition towards more environmentally-friendly solutions. This alliance will start by focusing on new sustainable biopolymers, specialties which could tangibly impact a breadth of markets, from home and personal care to agriculture and food.

As part of this partnership, Solvay will also acquire a Ginkgo (formerly Zymergen) laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This acquisition will expand Solvay’s R&I footprint in the US, provide access to new talents, and establish a sustainable growth base in synthetic biology in one the most important biotech hubs in the world, accelerating the company’s biotech development plan.

With this strategic collaboration and expansion, Solvay will integrate deep competencies in bioinformatics / data science, strain engineering, biocatalysis and fermentation processes, strengthening and accelerating the ability to scout, develop and turn into businesses the most valuable biotech-enabled opportunities.

This partnership is designed to strengthen Solvay’s position in biotechnology as part of the Renewable Materials and Biotechnology growth platform which aims to meet growing demand for sustainable solutions by increasing the share of renewable carbon in Solvay’s product offering and developing new business opportunities enabled by biotechnology. This growth platform complements the company’s activities in three other key areas: battery materials, green hydrogen and thermoplastic composites.

“We’re thrilled to make this important investment and to partner with Ginkgo Bioworks on an exciting project to develop sustainable chemicals and materials, allowing us to provide innovative biotechnologies to new markets,” said Solvay CEO Ilham Kadri. “Biotech is the future and this step is an important milestone for our growth platform. We expect to leverage our new presence in the Boston area to step up and accelerate our offerings in this field.”

“We’re so excited to welcome Solvay to our platform and to the Boston area at such a pivotal growth period for both of our companies. In our case, it's fantastic to be able to integrate platform capabilities from Zymergen and make them accessible to our partners so quickly,” said Jason Kelly, CEO and co-founder of Ginkgo Bioworks, “Synthetic biology can help companies across a wide breadth of markets reach their environmental and economic goals at the same time, and it’s thrilling to work with a partner taking such a big swing at sustainability.”

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