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Business Roundup

May 27, 2013 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 91, Issue 21

PQ Corp. will spend $120 million to expand its silica catalyst and Zeolyst International specialty catalyst operations in Kansas City, Kan. To be completed by the end of 2015, the projects will add as many as 50 jobs to the 100 now at the site, PQ says.

Chemtura has acquired the 50% of DayStar Materials it doesn’t already own from its partner UP Chemical. Daystar is a South Korean manufacturer of metal organic compounds, such as trimethylgallium, used to make light-emitting diodes.

H. B. Fuller has agreed to purchase Plexbond Química, a Brazilian manufacturer of specialty polyurethanes and polyester resins. Fuller says the firm, which had $20 million in sales last year, will boost its presence both in Brazil and in adhesives for flexible packaging.

Eos Energy Storage, developer of a metal-air battery based on what it calls a zinc hybrid cathode, has raised $15 million in a second round of venture funding from investors including NRG Energy. Eos plans to build a pilot manufacturing plant for its batteries, which are intended for utility storage.

GlaxoSmithKline has won a contract from the U.S. Biomedical Advanced Research & Development Authority to develop antibiotics for drug-resistant infections and bioterrorism pathogens. The award, worth up to $200 million, is BARDA’s first portfolio-wide agreement, enabling projects across GSK’s antibacterial pipeline to be eligible for funding.

Merck Serono’s former site in Geneva, Switzerland, has been sold to a consortium that plans to convert it into Campus Biotech, a research site that will be occupied by existing Swiss institutes as well as start-ups and other businesses. The Wyss Foundation is contributing about $100 million to the effort.

Almac and University College London will jointly pursue commercially useful enzyme biocatalysts under a program funded by the U.K.’s Biotechnology & Biological Sciences Research Council. The partners will focus mainly on transaminase and cytochrome P450 enzymes.

Evotec will work with Harvard University scientists to discover and develop small-molecule antibacterial agents, using technologies and chemical starting points licensed from Harvard. The collaboration leverages the research of professors Daniel Kahne and Suzanne Walker.

Amgen and Novartis have signed on as partners with Atlas Venture, a venture capital fund in Cambridge, Mass., focused on creating life sciences start-ups. The drug firms have also contributed to a new $265 million Atlas investment fund.



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