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Business Roundup

January 4, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 1

DuPont will close its pilot-scale cellulosic ethanol plant in Vonore, Tenn. The facility opened in 2010 to demonstrate technology developed by the chemical maker and Danisco, which DuPont later acquired. In October 2015, DuPont opened a much larger ethanol facility in Nevada, Iowa.

PPG Industries has begun using titanium dioxide that China’s Henan Billions Chemicals produces with chloride process technology licensed from PPG. PPG says it is incorporating the TiO2 into standard grades of paint.

CP Kelco, a maker of specialty hydrocolloids, will increase its pectin capacity in Europe to meet growing global demand for the citrus-peel-based food thickener. The company recently completed a 30% increase in pectin capacity at its plant in Brazil.

Sapphire Energy, a producer of bulk microalgae, has raised $92 million from undisclosed investors. Sapphire was founded in 2007 with the goal of making algal fuels, but in early 2015 the firm said it would first pursue markets in high-value oils, aquaculture, and animal feeds.

Merck & Co. has extended a contract to purchase a proprietary enzyme from Codexis used to manufacture sitagliptin, the active ingredient in the diabetes medicine Januvia. The enzymatic synthesis was a 2010 recipient of EPA’s Presidential Green Chemistry Challenge Award.

Boehringer Ingelheim will spend around $500 million to add mammalian cell culture protein drug production capacity to its site in Vienna by 2021. The Vienna site currently produces drug actives using microbial systems.



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