Ashland to acquire AkzoNobel biofunctional technology

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

Ashland to acquire AkzoNobel biofunctional technology
Fine chemicals player Ashland has announced the acquisition of AkzoNobel’s Zeta Fraction biofunctional technology as part of its ambitions to grow its sustainable, natural-based specialty ingredients business.

Ashland has signed a definitive agreement to purchase the technology in a move that will broaden its ingredients offering in the personal care segment, as well as the food, pharma and agricultural markets.

The transaction is expected to be completed during the current financial quarter ending in September, while financial terms have not been disclosed.

A highly refined extraction technology

High level extraction technology selectively isolates efficacious components from living plants and marine sources to produce a wide range of biofunctional ingredients, the company claims.

The process works by targeting cellular faction that are gently separated based on unique patented technology that preserves the value and functional aspects of the plant cells while still in a hydrated state.

This contrasts from conventional plant extraction processes that isolated botanical extracts from dry plants, using external solvents that can lead to limitations such as shelf life stability, making it harder to reproduce.

The technology targets issues with bioavailability

But as well as enhancing the extraction, the technology also tackles the pressing issue of bioavailability, which, when it comes to high demand ingredients and natural occurring cycles in plant availability, adds to supply pressures.

“A major challenge in many consumer markets is bioavailability,”​ said James Mish, group vice president, Consumer Specialties, Ashland Specialty Ingredients.

“Making actives or substances more available in a formulated product is essential to a superior consumer experience. Ashland’s objective is to work with innovative manufacturers of consumer care products at the early stages of product development, and to deliver bioavailability solutions that lead to better market opportunities for customers.”

Bringing ingredients development in-house

The acquisition of the technology has been driven by the company’s aim to integrate a comprehensive range of applications for the development of ingredients in-house.

“As global consumers increasingly ask for more sophisticated personal-care products, Ashland is bringing enterprise solutions to finished product manufacturers for implementation across their product platforms,”​ said Mish.

“This unique, naturally based technology is a catalyst to expand Ashland’s comprehensive expertise in biofunctionals gained from our Vincience technology and our core competency in bioavailability.”

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