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Business Roundup

August 20, 2017 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 95, ISSUE 33

Sadara,a joint venture between Saudi Aramco and Dow Chemical in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, has started up a toluene diisocyanate plant, the last of 26 facilities to be commissioned at the site. The two companies agreed to build the $20 billion complex, the largest chemical project ever built all at once, six years ago.

MultiMechanics, a Nebraska-based developer of virtual testing software, has raised $1.9 million from investors including Solvay Ventures. The investment follows a partnership between MultiMechanics and Solvay to model composite structures used in the auto and aerospace industries.

Sumitomo Chemical will acquire Kyowa Hakko Bio’s plant growth regulator business. Kyowa Hakko offers growth regulators such as gibberellin, which makes grapes seedless, and forchlorfenuron, which makes fruit larger.

DuPont will acquire San Francisco-based Granular, a software and analytics firm that helps farmers manage resources, finances, and sustainability efforts. Granular CEO Sid Gorham will lead DuPont’s growing digital agriculture business.

Cambrex plans further expansion of its Charles City, Iowa, facility with a $24 million investment in highly potent active pharmaceutical ingredient capacity. The project follows the opening last year of a $50 million multipurpose small-molecule API plant.

Charles River Laboratories has acquired Brains On-Line, a Dutch contract research firm focused on central nervous system (CNS) diseases. CRL says the purchase, for $21 million, establishes it as “the premier single-source provider for a broad portfolio of discovery CNS services.”

Takeda Pharmaceutical and Stanford University have formed the Alliance for Innovative Medicines to transform Stanford research into new medicines. It will be led by Chaitan Khosla, a Stanford professor of chemistry and chemical engineering.

HitGen, a China-based developer of DNA-encoded libraries, has formed research pacts with Leo Pharma and Aduro. For both drug firms, HitGen will design, synthesize, and screen compound libraries against desired targets.



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