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Business Roundup

October 12, 2018 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 96, Issue 41

Perstorp, a Swedish chemicals group, says it will effectively double production of pentaerythritol tetravalerate, a phthalate-free polyester plasticizer, to 50,000 metric tons per year during 2019. To achieve this capacity hike, Perstorp says it has entered into a long-term production agreement with Italian producer Alcoplast.

Arkema plans to increase alkyd emulsion resins capacity at its Grand Rapids, Mich., facility by June 2019. The increase will support customer demand for solvent-free waterborne coatings that perform like traditional solvent-based products, the firm says.

Cabot Corp. has received $2.9 million to research low-cobalt lithium-ion battery cathodes from the U.S. Department of Energy. Cabot is partnering with Argonne National Laboratory and battery maker Saft to advance the project.

Evotec has struck a new three-year drug discovery initiative with Sanofi called LAB031. In the arrangement, Evotec will collaborate with academic researchers to develop small-molecule programs through lead optimization, and Sanofi has the option to acquire these programs for further development.

Hexcel has opened a carbon fiber and precursor plant in Isére, France. The $230 million plant will support growing demand from aerospace customers for carbon fiber composites.

Glympse Bio, a start-up cofounded by MIT scientist Sangeeta Bhatia, raised $22 million in a series A financing round to conduct clinical trials of its nanotechnology-based sensors for monitoring disease and drug response. Glympse’s lead program will use a urine-excreted nanosensor to detect a liver disease called nonalcoholic steatohepatitis.

C2 Pharma and Anklam Extrakt are collaborating to produce plant-derived cannabidiol (CBD) as an ­active pharmaceutical ingredient. The first samples should be available in early 2019.

Loop Industries has signed soft drink maker PepsiCo as a customer of its recycled polyester resins for use in packaging. Along with Indorama, Loop is building a depolymerization plant to recycle discarded plastics to start up in 2020. Loop already has agreements with L’Oréal, Evian, and Gatorade.


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