4 März 2008

Cognis buys into natural product specialist

Cooperation with InterMed Discovery for the development of biologically active ingredients

Cognis has acquired an interest in InterMed Discovery GmbH and at the same time signed a cooperation agreement. The global specialty chemicals supplier has thus ensured access to one of the world’s largest natural product data bases and exclusive access to selected potential active ingredients for specific applications in functional foods, dietary supplements as well as personal and home care products. This cooperation with InterMed Discovery allows Cognis to strenghten its portfolio of natural source products and compounds and to create the basis for further success in the innovation-driven growth markets of wellness and sustainability.

InterMed Discovery GmbH, based in Dortmund, researches and develops active ingredients based on natural products. The company owns one of the world’s largest proprietary collections of biologically-active natural substances and extracts. Using its unique technology platform, InterMed Discovery can correlate chemical structures with biological activity on a large scale (“IMD BioprofilingTM“) and thus identify novel active ingredients with defined applications. Together with InterMed Discovery Cognis will utilize this data base and technology to select, develop and market suitable active substances exclusively. The cooperation with Cognis allows InterMed Discovery to develop innovative and proprietary active ingredients for specific applications to market-readiness. InterMed Discovery is thus increasing its added value while extending its market access.

“The combination of InterMed Discovery’s natural product data and active ingredients with Cognis’ know-how and market expertise in nutrition and cosmetics creates a unique platform for the development of new, innovative products and thus strengthens our market position sustainably,” comments Norbert Weitkemper, Director Strategic Business Development Nutrition & Health at Cognis.

In addition to its own development projects for defined applications InterMed Discovery enters into strategic partnerships. “This cooperation with Cognis is therefore an important milestone in positioning us as a leading company in the discovery and development of active compounds based on natural products,” the managers of InterMed Discovery, Bernard Becker and Dr. Thomas Henkel, assess the cooperation.

About InterMed Discovery
InterMed Discovery GmbH, headquartered in Dortmund, was founded in 2006 as a management buy-out from Bayer HealthCare AG. The company has more than 20 years of experience in the discovery and development of active compounds derived from natural products. The company received seed financing in 2006 from the High-Tech Gründerfonds. InterMed Discovery disposes in particular of extensive proprietary natural product and genetic source collections, a unique technology platform as well as broad chemical and biological data bases. The company provides innovative, functional natural products for applications in all areas of the life sciences. In addition to focusing on the development of its own active compound portfolio, InterMed Discovery also performs natural product research and provides strategic cooperations. InterMed Discovery currently comprises a total staff of 28. The Management Team is actively supported by an Advisory Board comprising Prof. W. Hartwig, Dr. E. Stachels, Prof. H. Waldmann, and Dr. J. Wulff.

About Cognis
Cognis is a worldwide supplier of innovative specialty chemicals and nutritional ingredients, with a particular focus on the areas of wellness and sustainability. The company employs about 7,700 people, and it operates production sites and service centers in 30 countries. Cognis has dedicated its activities to a high level of sustainability and delivers natural source raw materials and ingredients for food, nutrition and healthcare markets, and the cosmetics, detergents and cleaners industries. Another main focus is on products for a number of other industries, such as coatings and inks, lubricants, textiles, as well as agriculture and mining. The subsidiary Pulcra Chemicals offers specialized chemical products and process expertise to customers in the fiber, textile, and leather industries. Cognis also holds a 50-percent stake in the joint venture Cognis Oleochemicals, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of oleochemicals.

(Cf. news of 2007-06-12.)

Source: Cognis, Pressemitteilung, 2008-03-03.

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