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Business Roundup

November 9, 2015 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 93, Issue 44

Olin intends to idle or permanently close up to 450,000 tons per year of chlor-alkali capacity. The planned move comes a month after Olin completed the purchase of Dow Chemical’s chlor-alkali, epoxy resins, and chlorinated organics business.

Dow Chemical will build a 13,500-m2 R&D facility at the KAUST Research & Technology Park in Saudi Arabia. When it opens, the center will be able to house up to 75 Dow R&D employees working on water treatment, oil and gas, building and construction, coating, and other products.

Mitsubishi Rayon plans to construct a carbon fiber composite materials plant in Vilshofen, Germany. When completed in September 2016, the facility will have the capacity to make 1,000 metric tons per year of sheet molding compound for the automotive market.

Albemarle will sell its Tribotecc metal sulfides business to Austria’s Treibacher Industrie. The deal includes two plants in Austria and Tribotecc’s sulfide synthesis process. Albemarle still plans to sell its fine chemicals business.

Nuritas, an Irish biotech start-up, has raised $3.2 million in a first round of funding led by Singapore-based New Protein Capital. Nuritas seeks to discover health-promoting peptides with the help of artificial intelligence and DNA sequencing.

WuXi PharmaTech is setting up a lab in Shanghai that will work exclusively for the big biotech firm Gilead Sciences. The facility will conduct studies of small-molecule new chemical entities, including stability tests and generation of data for regulatory compliance.

Domainex, a small-molecule drug discovery services provider, plans to move into new quarters at Chesterford Research Park in Cambridge, En­gland. The 20,000-sq-ft facility will increase the firm’s lab capacity by 140%. Domainex says it is recruiting a number of new scientists.

Merck KGaA and Selvita, a Polish drug discovery company, have renewed an oncology research collaboration for three years. The partners hope to advance small-molecule drug candidates by sharing resources and funding.

Johnson & Johnson has agreed to acquire Novira Therapeutics, a biotech firm developing cures for hepatitis B virus infection. The firm’s lead candidate is NVR 3-778, a small molecule that inhibits the HBV core or capsid protein.



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