January 30, 2014

Solazyme Announces U.S. Commercial Production of Renewable Algal Oils at Iowa Facilities

Solazyme, Inc. announced today that commercial operations have commenced at both Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM)’s Clinton, Iowa facility, and the downstream companion facility operated by American Natural Products in Galva, Iowa (ANP). Highlighting the flexibility of Solazyme’s technology platform, Solazyme, ADM and ANP have successfully manufactured three distinct and unique Tailored oil products at the facilities, and products are currently being sold and distributed in both the U.S. and Brazil. Volumes shipped to Brazil are being utilized for market development activity in advance of the opening of the Solazyme Bunge Renewable Oils Moema facility. As stated previously, production at the ADM and ANP facilities is expected to ramp to a nameplate capacity of 20,000 MT/yr within 12-18 months, with targeted potential expansion to 100,000 MT/yr in subsequent years.

“This is a critical milestone for Solazyme’s large scale commercial manufacturing capabilities. The Solazyme, ADM and ANP teams have done an excellent job bringing up commercial operations at the Iowa facilities with Solazyme’s Tailored oil production technology. We have already successfully produced three Tailored oil products at scale and have begun selling these products into the North American marketplace,” said Jonathan Wolfson, CEO Solazyme. “Consistent with our stated plans, we are focused initially on ensuring consistent and reliable operations as we build customer trust. While we acknowledge that it is still early days, we look forward to the opportunity to expand our production volume and the slate of oil products available.”

Truckloads of product are now shipping from the Iowa operations for use in applications including lubricants, metalworking and home and personal care. These shipments are being made pursuant to multiple supply agreements as well as spot purchases, and include reorders.

In the high-performance lubricants and metalworking fluids industries, Solazyme’s Renewable Tailored algal oils help to provide outstanding performance and a sustainable solution with better lubrication, surface tension and viscosity index, plus enhanced stability at elevated temperature, pressure and speed. In home and personal care, Solazyme’s Tailored algal oils offer better performance and a more sustainable alternative to existing oils.

January 25, 2014

Reliance Industries to invest in Algae.Tec and fund its first India Plant

Continuing in its rapid expansion in diverse fields, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) has announced an investment in Australian algae fuel developer Algae.Tec's first Indian biofuel plant. The Indian Market represents a possible huge market for the Perth-based company and many companies are eyeing setting up shop here.

Mukesh Ambani owned RIL will initially invest $1.5 million in the Australian company followed by $1.2 million at a later date. Using the initial capital, Algae.Tec plans to build a pilot biofuels plants using its algae fuel technology. Reliance Industrial Investments and Holdings Limited (RIIHL) will fund the small pilot plant - which will capture Co2 emissions and turn this into algae for use as biofuels.

This pilot plant is designed with a view to modify the present technology to suit the local conditions. This will most probably lead to a larger demonstration plant. In the future though, we anticipate that RIL and Algae.Tec will join forces to establish commercial plants in India. In that respect, Reliance has the edge as it has exclusivity over the technology in the India market.

While various people have been speculating over the location of this pilot plant, sources say that it will be amidst the huge petroleum refineries in Jamnagar, Gujarat.

Algae.Tec has been confident about the positive impact the company's technology will have on India's energy sector. The Australian company's managing director Peter Hatfull is of the opinion that algae technology had the potential to make a significant impact on India's energy and environmental requirements. He was further quoted as saying, "This is a major step for us. India is a perfect market place for our technology It is an absolutely gigantic market" (Sic). These comments come on the back of widespread criticism of the Indian energy sector which hasn't ceased its huge reliance on coal-fired generation and the lack for demand of clean biofuels.

In December 2013, Algae.Tec said it would focus on the 'nutraceuticals' market. Nutraceuticals are dietary supplements that support physical and mental health. The company's move away from algal fuels was influenced by the low capital costs of the former, as well as the potential for high gross margins on revenue, and significant market potential. With this move, the revenue that the company expects to generate in the next three years is significantly more than its present as the nutraceuticals market is touted to be worth $205 billion globally by 2017.

January 23, 2014

Algenol Awarded Governor’s Innovators in Business Awards

Today, Florida Governor Rick Scott and Secretary of Commerce and President and CEO of Enterprise Florida (EFI), Gray Swoope announced the winners of the 2013 Governor’s Innovators in Business Awards during Florida Business Innovators Week. The awards recognize Florida companies in select industries that have influenced the state’s economic growth and diversification over the last year.

Governor Scott said, “Florida’s economy has experienced a huge turnaround. In three years, Florida has added over 446,000 private-sector jobs and our unemployment rate has fallen below the national average to 6.4 percent. Businesses are able to thrive because we have created an economic climate in Florida that supports job creation. I want to congratulate all of the companies being recognized today for their hard work in creating jobs and helping to create an opportunity economy in Florida that supports jobs for generations to come. Florida families are able to live the American Dream with the help of the successful, innovative companies that call Florida home, and I am proud to recognize some of those companies today."

Secretary of Commerce Swoope said, “Florida and its companies continue to be the model for economic recovery and growth. Companies from every industry around the state have helped produce jobs and provide opportunities that companies in other states just haven’t been able to match. They truly deserve to be recognized for their resilience, innovation and achievements. On behalf of EFI, congratulations to each of these worthy companies and we look forward to their continued success.”

Algenol won in the Governor’s Innovation/Entrepreneurship Award category which is described as "Florida start-up companies or innovative companies that have set a standard for entrepreneurship and creativity in the past three years."

January 19, 2014

Solix BioSystems Appoints Austin Maguire to President and CEO Position

Solix BioSystems, Inc., a leader in photosynthetic algal technology, announced recently the appointment of Austin Maguire as its President and Chief Executive Officer. Maguire brings over 25 years of experience in operations and executive management to Solix at a time when the company is shifting towards commercialization and scaling its operations to satisfy the growing demand for natural high-value, specialty algal products for the nutrition, personal care and aquaculture markets.

“I am delighted that Austin has joined the team at Solix,” says Ilya Golubovich of I2BF Global Ventures, a major investor in Solix. “Austin brings a demonstrated track record of leadership success in the development, scale-up and global commercialization of new high-value specialty food ingredients. His extensive experience will be instrumental in ensuring the success of Solix’s first commercial product launches.”

Prior to joining Solix, Maguire was most recently the President of Calera Corporation, a Khosla Ventures-backed carbon dioxide sequestration company, where he led the scale-up of the company’s technology and the development of key strategic alliances. Prior to Calera, Maguire served as the President of Tate & Lyle Sucralose Inc., where he led the global SPLENDA® Sucralose sweetener business for eleven years until 2008. At Tate & Lyle, Maguire was also a member of the Group’s Senior Operations Management Committee. Earlier positions in Maguire’s Tate & Lyle career involved living in the U.S., Canada and the U.K. and included progressive increases in global responsibility such as Operations and Managing Director level positions in the U.K.  Maguire began his career with Irish Refining Company as a process and project engineer in their Exxon managed oil refinery and later moved to Angus Fine Chemicals, an American/French contract manufacturing joint venture. Maguire holds a chemical engineering degree from University College Dublin, Ireland.

“Solix has already proven its technology’s versatility at scale, and I am excited about moving the company forward to the commercialization phase and delivering innovative natural microalgae-derived products that meet growing consumer demand” said Maguire.

Joel Butler, former CEO, will continue at Solix in the new role of Chief Strategic Alliance Officer.

December 12, 2013

Solazyme Announces New President and Board Member David C. Cole

Solazyme, Inc. today announced the appointment of David C. Cole as Solazyme’s President effective January 1, 2014. He has also been elected to Solazyme’s Board of Directors. Mr. Cole most recently held the position of CEO of Maui Land & Pineapple Company, Inc. and helped form both the Brazil Renewable Energy Company and Hawaii BioEnergy. He has been a strategic advisor to Solazyme since 2010.

“Solazyme will benefit enormously from David’s deep management experience and vision as we enter our next phase of commercialization,” said Jonathan Wolfson, CEO, Solazyme. “He has been a close and trusted advisor to me and to Solazyme for almost four years, and we are very excited to work with him in his new role.”

Mr. Cole has extensive experience as an executive commercializing disruptive technologies across the publishing, software, Internet and food sectors with positions including CEO of Ashton-Tate, President of Ziff Communications, Group President of AOL New Enterprises, Managing Member of Sunnyside Farms (an organic food producer and marketer), and co-founder and Chairman of Acirca (an organic food company sold to Hain Celestial).

Mr. Cole has also served on boards for a variety of organizations including Sesame Workshop, PBS, The Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund and American Farmland Trust.

Mr. Cole joins other board members, Michael Arbige, EVP Technology of DuPont Genencor Science; Ian Clark, CEO of Genentech; Jim Craigie, Chairman and CEO of Church & Dwight Co.; Chairman Jerry Fiddler, former CEO and founder of Wind River Systems; Peter Kovacs, former President and CEO of NutraSweet Kelco; Ann Mather, former CFO of Pixar and current board member of Google, MGM Holdings Inc., and Netflix; and Jonathan Wolfson, CEO and co-founder of Solazyme.