Evonik Invests Heavily in Biotech

09.10.2012 -

Evonik Industries, a manufacturers of specialty chemicals, plans to continue expanding its commitment to biotechnology.

"Biotech opens up interesting opportunities for profitable growth in a range of business areas," says Patrik Wohlhauser, a member of the Executive Board. "It's also giving Evonik's growth strategy a stronger focus on sustainable development. In the Health & Nutrition Business Unit alone we are hoping for sales of €1 billion over the medium term for products made using biotechnology."

Evonik will be investing some €350 million by 2014 to expand its Biolys business. An amino acid used in animal feeds, Biolys is a source of L-lysine produced via fermentation.

Investments include construction of new L-lysine plants in Brazil and Russia capable of producing nearly 200,000 metric tons each year as well as a recently finished production expansion to 280,000 metric tons per year at its Blair site in North America.

The nexus of biotech research at Evonik is the company's Halle-Künsebeck site in eastern North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. Now celebrating its 30th anniversary, the site is home to experts who are continuing to develop amino acids for modern animal nutrition, as well as biotech methods for other Evonik business units. Applications for these methods include polymer production and the manufacture of active ingredients in cosmetics.