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Business Roundup

December 17, 2021 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 99, Issue 45


Eastman Chemical is considering building additional plants in the US and Europe that use its methanolysis process to break down polyethylene terephthalate into dimethyl terephthalate and ethylene glycol. The firm expects the first large plant to open in Kingsport, Tennessee, by the end of 2022 and to cost $250 million.

Ascensus Specialties has acquired the fine chemical maker Wychem. The deal expands US-based Ascensus’s reach into the UK and Europe and adds new chemistry types to its offerings in starting materials and intermediates for drug manufacturing.

Bridgestone will sell its chemical business, which has annual sales approaching $500 million, to the Japanese investment firm Endeavour United. Bridgestone is unloading the unit to focus on its core tire operations.

Cabot and International Flavors & Fragrances will work to develop biobased rubber additives that will be marketed by Cabot. The firms plan to blend a sugar beet–derived polysaccharide from IFF and reinforcing carbons from Cabot.

CordenPharma and Wacker Chemie will develop processes for manufacturing lipid nanoparticles as delivery systems for nucleic acid therapeutics. The partners will work at CordenPharma’s site in Caponago, Italy, and Wacker’s site in Amsterdam.

Novasep plans to spend $6.8 million to boost active pharmaceutical ingredient production at its plant in Chasse-sur-Rhône, France. The company will expand flow chemistry at the site by adding a clinical-supply-to-launch-scale reactor.

METiS Therapeutics has launched with $86 million in series A financing to apply artificial intelligence and machine learning to drug discovery and drug delivery. The start-up plans to predict interactions between active ingredients, excipients, and drug targets to design better drug formulations.

GlaxoSmithKline and the University of Oxford have launched the Oxford-GSK Institute of Molecular and Computational Medicine, backed with about $39 million from GSK. The institute seeks to understand the mechanisms of neurological diseases, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.



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