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Business Roundup

November 1, 2018 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 96, Issue 44


Arsenal Capital has acquired FAR Chemical from Edgewater Capital Partners for an undisclosed amount. Florida-based FAR will become part of Arsenal’s CPS Performance Materials, a specialty polymers firm that purchased chemiluminescent glow stick maker Cyalume Technologies in 2017.

Arkema will help lead MMAtwo, a project funded with about $8 million from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research program to depolymerize polymethyl methacrylate, also known as acrylic resin. MMAtwo aims to build a commercial plant for the recycling process after the project wraps up in 2022.

Geltor, a start-up specializing in animal-free collagen, has raised $18.2 million in a first round of venture funding from Cultivan Sandbox Ventures, the venture arm of Archer Daniels Midland, and others. Geltor uses biology, protein optimization, and fermentation to produce collagen for consumer products.

Mitsui Chemicals and Chitose Group have formed two ventures in Japan. The two new companies, Phyto Renaissance and Tierraponica, aim to commercialize the expertise of their parents in cell culture and microbiota-activated cultivation.

Lonza has acquired a controlling stake in Octane Biotech, a small Canadian company developing a disposable system called Cocoon for cell-therapy manufacturing. Lonza will use Cocoon for CAR T-cell and stem cell therapies.

XtalPi, a Chinese start-up combining artificial intelligence, cloud computing, and quantum physics for drug discovery and development, has raised $46 million in series B financing led by China Life Healthcare Fund. Previous investors include Google, Sequoia China, and Tencent.

Roche will pay $25 million to use Halozyme Therapeutics’ Enhanze drug delivery technology on an undisclosed compound. Enhanze is based on an enzyme that temporarily degrades hyaluronan in the body to aid in drug dispersion and absorption.

Novartis and Pfizer will study therapies for the treatment of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis that combine Novartis’s tropifexor with one or more Pfizer compounds. Novartis has similar pacts with Allergan and Conatus Pharmaceuticals.


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