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HOUSTON, Aug. 11, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Houston-based Cemvita Factory announces its initial closing of Series A, led by 8090 Partners, to accelerate industrial decarbonization.
Houston-based Cemvita Factory (Cemvita), a leading industrial biotechnology startup that uses innovative synthetic biology to decarbonize heavy industry such as chemical manufacturing, mining, and oil and gas, today announces the initial closing of its Series A financing to accelerate the company's mission of reversing climate change. The round was led by 8090 Partners, with participation from key existing investor Oxy Low Carbon Ventures (OLCV), along with Seldor Capital, Climate Capital, and others.
Cemvita's bio-manufacturing platform mitigates emissions resulting from traditionally energy-intensive chemical and catalytic conversion processes by operating under ambient temperature and pressure. Additionally, this same technology is able to turn polymer production into a low carbon activity by utilizing carbon dioxide (CO2) as a feedstock, a crucial step in building a circular carbon economy. Cemvita is currently working with a number of clients in industry to help them use CO2 as a resource to lower their carbon footprint.
Cemvita's conversion platform leverages the biomimicry of natural processes to sustainably produce chemicals and polymers. Additionally, Cemvita's biotech platform is used to develop and optimize low carbon bio-extraction processes, such as bioleaching for the mining industry.
"Decarbonizing heavy industry is one of the most critical challenges in addressing climate change," says Moji Karimi, CEO of Cemvita.
"Synthetic biology is now primed to revolutionize heavy industries because of its inherent low-carbon advantages, and Cemvita is taking the lead in identifying and derisking the key applications. We believe the adoption rate and market size growth of our target applications will only accelerate due to the urgency for a low-carbon energy transition. The future of manufacturing will be low-carbon biomanufacturing and the future of mining will be sustainable biomining."
"While synthetic biology has proven to be effective in re-imagining food and proteins, we've long held a firm belief in synthetic biology's promise in the heavy industrial space, but have waited until we've seen the right technology and team to drive real innovation in the sector. Cemvita's technology is a fundamental game-changer that provides a real economic solution and major players across heavy industry have taken serious notice. — Rayyan Islam, Partner at 8090 Partners
"Cemvita's technology is truly revolutionary in its use of CO2 and as a resource to provide viable economic solutions as more and more companies seek ways to reduce their carbon footprint. We remain impressed and excited about Cemvita's technology's positive impact on Earth and beyond," said Sidney N. Nakahodo, Founder and General Partner of Seldor Capital.
Cemvita's technology was first developed based on the fundamental research done by cofounder and CTO Dr. Tara Karimi which she published in a Springer book. Initially Cemvita was funded by a space agency to develop a biological pathway for conversion of CO2 to glucose as a food source to enable deep space exploration. From there the company developed 30 additional pathways from CO2 to other molecules targeted for the chemical industry and also launched its biomining vertical to grow into a synthetic biology platform, servicing the heavy industry. The company will use this Series A financing to accelerate development of its platform technology and further derisk the targeted applications.
Part of the Series A will be allocated to launch Cemvita's bio-hydrogen solution, and to further support the construction and operation of a bio-ethylene pilot plant with OLCV, applying a jointly developed technology using human-made CO2 instead of fossil-fuel sourced feedstocks. The pilot project is expected to scale up the process that was successful in laboratory tests, which showed that the OLCV-Cemvita technology may be competitive with hydrocarbon-sourced ethylene processes. Ethylene is widely used in the chemical industry, primarily as a precursor to polymers used to make durable, long-life products.
Cemvita recently won the GS Beyond Energy Innovation Challenge and was also selected as a BloombergNEF Pioneer 2021, a cohort member at Carbon2Value Initiative. Cemvita will continue to expand its synthetic biology platform and is actively seeking additional hires across functions within the company as well as customers interested in bio-based low-carbon solutions.
About Cemvita Factory
Cemvita Factory, Inc, is on a mission to reverse climate change by leveraging synthetic biology. This is done by leveraging the biomimicry of natural processes to sustainably produce chemicals and polymers. Additionally, Cemvita's synthetic biology platform is used to develop and optimize low carbon bioprocesses for heavy industry such as mining and oil and gas. Visit www.cemvitafactory.com for more information.
About 8090 Partners
8090 Partners is a private partnership of industry-leading families and entrepreneurs focused on direct investments and opportunistic transactions. 8090 Partners' Breakthrough Fund was created in concert with prominent industrial and energy families to invest, support and accelerate breakthrough technology companies tackling decarbonization across every major industrial sector. Previous investments include Heliogen, Noya, Circ and Arevo.
About Seldor Capital
Seldor Capital is a NYC-based Venture Capital firm focused on investing in the most promising startups that develop technologies for space exploration while applying those technologies to solve Earth's most pressing challenges, such as sustainable development and climate change. For more information, visit www.seldorcapital.com.
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