Ginkgo Bioworks Goes International Days After SPAC Announcement

Boston-based synthetic biology company acquiring Dutch enzyme manufacturer

Ginkgo Bioworks isn’t letting any grass grow under its feet. Just a week after inking a $2.5 billion pact to go public via the special purpose acquisition company Soaring Eagle Acquisition Corp. (SRNGFinancial), the Boston-based company is expanding overseas.

The synthetic biology company is acquiring Dutch DNA Biotech, a contract manufacturing organization that makes enzymes, proteins and organic acids using its fungus-based technology. Ginkgo will acquire 100% of the Utrecht, Netherlands-based company through a combination of cash and equity, though the specifics of the deal weren’t released. Closing is expected in July.

Fierce Biotech reported Ginkgo CEO Jason Kelly said Dutch DNA’s technology could have applications across a wide range of industries, including more efficient and sustainable production of plant-based foods, low-energy laundry detergents, pharmaceutical manufacturing and more.

Ginkgo started operating in 2008 to develop a program that makes it simpler to engineer cells. The company’s initial focus was industries outside of biopharma, but as it brought in more money it began to apply its technology to drug development. Its partners now include Roche (RHHBYFinancial) and Moderna Inc. (MRNAFinancial). If Gingko can move Roche antibiotic candidates into the clinic, the company could receive $160 million out of the $300 million Roche committed in development and potential sales milestones.

With Moderna, Gingko supported the -19 vaccine maker with a process to maximize key materials used in the shot.

Soaring Eagle raised $1.7 billion from its initial public offering. It trades at just short of $10 a share. Ginkgo is set to raise a further $775 million through a private placement.

Former Kite Pharma CEO Arie Belldegrun, via Bellco Capital, is co-sponsoring the transaction and putting money into the private placement. The biotech veteran will become a member of the board of directors of Ginkgo after the acquisition.

In a statement, Belldegrun said he is getting involved “with the hope of expanding use of Ginkgo’s state-of-the-art technology to assist biopharma companies and expedite drug development.”

Talking about the deal, Ginkgo presented a list of areas where its technology can be applied. They include antibody therapeutic development, nucleic acid vaccine production, antibiotic discovery and manufacturing, microbiome therapeutics and gene and cell therapies.

This year, Ginkgo expects revenue to nearly double to $150 million, a figure that may only scratch the surface of its potential as its cell technology expands to other industries.

Source: GuruFocus – Ginkgo Bioworks Goes International Days After SPAC Announcement