Genomatica Hires Morgan Stanley to Underwrite $100M IPO

Genomatica, the maker of green chemicals, has filed for a $100 million Initial Public Offering, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) document.

The San Diego, Calif.-based company has hired Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan Securities and Jefferies as underwriters. Piper Jaffray and Raymond James are also participating in the share-sale.

Genomatica develops a key chemical intermediate known as Butanediol (BDO) from sugar rather than hydrocarbons. BDO are used to make polymers, a key component of plastics, among other things.  The company’s intellectual property was first developed as part of a graduate school thesis by current CEO Christophe Schilling.

The filling comes at a time of rising recessionary fear and erratic stock market performances. However, Genomatica says its carbon-free chemicals, which can be used to make anythings, from cosmetics and food flavorings, will convince investors to buy shares.

So far Genomatica has raised roughly $84 million from its venture backers including TPG Biotech, a unit of Texas Pacific Group as well as Mohr Davidow Ventures, Alloy Ventures and Draper Fisher Jurvetson.

Genomatica can make chemicals from corn, biomass or landfill gas, which in turn can be used to make tights and even biofuels for jet planes. The company does not plan to finance its own chemical refineries but instead license its process to well established players.

The S1 shows that since 2008 Genomatica registered a cumulative loss of $44.9  million. Last year the company registered $1.9 million in revenues from $319,000 the year before. Since 2008 the company invested a combined $32 million in research and development.

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