BASF invests in renewable chemicals company Allylix

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Ecological footprint

BASF has announced a $13.5m(Euros 10.3bn) investment in chemicals player Allylix, a move that expands its global footprint in the market for renewable materials used in cosmetics.

BASF led an initiative that also involved Tate & Lyle Ventures, Avrio Ventures and Cultivant Ventures in a joint $18.2m investment to fun further expansion for the US-based company.

Allylix owns a proprietary technology platform developed to produce a wide variety of renewable specialty chemicals derived from natural sources that can be used for applications such as fragrances for the cosmetics industry, as well as flavours for the food industry.

It is chiefly concerned with the production of Tepenes and their derivatives, which are usually difficult to produce through chemical synthesis and not in abundance as a natural resource.

The company’s technology platform allows combines biotechnology and molecular biology methods to quickly develop and produce specific fermentation processes for individual chemical requirements, with the added claim of being low-cost.

Technology based on fermentation​  

The technology is based on fermentation, which leads to renewable compounds with a purity rating that previously were only available from natural resources and in limited quantities.

With finished goods companies increasingly under pressure from consumers to reduce the carbon footprint of their products, every aspect of the supply chain is coming under scrutiny.

One of the most important and obvious areas to target is the formulation process, which means increasingly the big cosmetics players are asking suppliers to develop ingredients with lower carbon footprints, whether from greener production processes and by sourcing more sustainable or renewable materials.

Tapping into trend for naturally-derived cosmetics

The technology also taps into the consumer trend for naturally-derived cosmetics and personal care products, which is also one of the fastest growth areas within the industry, as consumers reach out for products that they perceived to be more wholesome and safer.

BASF says that the investment falls in line with its commitment to increase the use of renewable raw materials, more specifically leveraging its sustainable aroma chemical portfolio for cosmetics.

“The company has demonstrated the ability to produce high-quality products at scalable commercial quantities and at a lower price point, which is one of several compelling reasons to invest in Allylix,”​ said Dr. Daniela Proske, principal at BASF Venture Capital America.

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