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Hi BESTers,

This New York Times article details the founding of Solazyme, a company 
that seeks to create a carbon neutral fuel from microalgae. The 
California-based company seeks to create mass-scale production of clean 
microalgae-based fuels, but has addressed several challenges owing to 
the capital intensive nature of clean tech companies. In layman's terms, 
these clean tech companies tend to spend a lot of money on research and 
development before they show any promise of return on investment.

On their path to clean fuel, Solazyme has resorted to pursuing multiple 
markets in algal oils in order to stay afloat. Along with support from 
the government, Solazyme has partnered with several companies to produce 
algal oils for nutrition, cosmetics, and personal care. Solazyme shows 
promise in their agreements with companies such as Unilever, Sephora and 
QVC. A promising partnership has been established with Bunge Limited, a 
food processing company that plans to build a plant next to its sugar 
cane refinery in Brazil. They plan to use the sugar to feed the algae, 
and they expect to make up to 30 million gallons of oil per year for 
care products.

I would note that the building of a factory in Brazil to feed the algae 
strikes me as particularly interesting, because Brazil is a huge 
potential market for alternative fuels, and because oil-producing 
infrastructure that is successful at producing other products could 
translate into oil-producing clean fuel factories.

I would keep an eye on this company! They sound innovative and 
imaginative.


http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/23/business/for-solazyme-a-side-trip-on-the-way-to-clean-fuel.html?pagewanted=1


BEST to you all and thanks for your time,

Nury Dominguez
Bioenergy & Sustainability Society
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
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352.327.5925