Synthetic Biology Startup Allozymes Raises US $5 Million Seed Round to Deliver Sustainable, Scalable Manufacturing of Natural Ingredients

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  • Responsible consumers and companies are increasingly unwilling to tolerate the significant environmental impacts associated with natural ingredients sourcing.
  • The startup, co-founded by scientist-entrepreneurs, Peyman Salehian, PhD and Akbar Vahidi, PhD, employs a unique technology platform for the sustainable and scalable synthesis of natural ingredients. 
  • Xora Innovation, the deep science investment platform of Temasek Holdings, leads the round with participation from SOSV, TI Platform Management, and Entrepreneur First.

SINGAPORE, July 21, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Allozymes, a Singapore-based, synthetic biology startup, announced today that it has raised US $5 million in a seed financing round led by Xora Innovation, the deep science investment arm of Temasek Holdings. SOSV, TI Platform Management, and Entrepreneur First have also joined the round.

Co-founded by scientist-entrepreneurs Peyman Salehian, PhD and Akbar Vahidi, PhD, Allozymes plans to disrupt the trillion dollar biomanufacturing sector by delivering cleaner, greener, sustainably-produced natural ingredients, at scale, through custom-designed enzymes.

“Think of enzymes as autonomous nano-scale bio-machines that build molecules or break them down as needed, to provide energy, weaponry and construction material for living cells. It takes millions of years for nature to evolve these bio-machines for natural processes like the creation of cheese and wine but at Allozymes we accelerate the evolution of these bio-machines and engineer them in a matter of weeks,” said Dr. Akbar Vahidi, CTO of Allozymes.

Enzyme engineering is all about finding the right enzyme from a large number of enzyme variants. Much like searching for a needle in a haystack, this process has been a major bottleneck for the development of specialty industrial enzymes. Accordingly, current enzyme engineering processes remain time-consuming and costly, discouraging wider industrial adoption.

Allozymes’ proprietary platform analyzes and maps millions of enzyme variants per day, boosting the likelihood of developing the most effective, fit-for-purpose enzyme for a given commercial application. Allozymes has already demonstrated the ability of their platform to produce novel functional enzymes through pilot projects with innovative pharma, agri-food, and personal care companies, in a fraction of the time and cost, compared to robotics technology. These enzymes include oxidases, reductases, isomerases, and hydrolases, workhouse enzymes of industrial biotechnology.

The platform is also capable of generating massive enzyme performance datasets, exponentially larger than competitors.

“We plan to utilize this data for enzyme discovery, design, and optimization. Ingredient manufacturers would only need to search in our data set to find the right enzymes for their needs or to quickly improve their available enzymes,” said Dr. Peyman Salehian, CEO of Allozymes. “Our biotechnology platform enables the sustainable and economical production of natural ingredients for a broad array of industrial applications, everything from sweeteners, to natural colors, to vitamins, personal care and cosmetic ingredients, for a start.”

The company plans to use the proceeds of the seed financing to establish its Singapore-based manufacturing and business infrastructure and prioritize the strong demand it is seeing in the ASEAN and broader APAC region.

“Whether for food, fashion, fuels, or electronics, Allozymes enables commercial access to custom enzymes at unprecedented speed, scale and quality,” said Donna See, CEO of Xora Innovation. “Embedded in the fastest-growing sustainable products market in the world, Allozymes is well-positioned with a unique value proposition for ESG-minded partners in the region and beyond.”

Duncan Turner, General Partner of SOSV, said, “Engineered enzymes have only just skimmed the surface of their potential impact. Allozymes exponentially speeds up enzyme development, enabling engineered enzymes to become a foundational part of the future of agriculture, biofuels, CPGs, and chemical processing.”

About Allozymes

Founded in 2019, Allozymes is delivering cleaner, greener, sustainably-produced natural ingredients, at scale. Through the power of custom enzymes, we help our partners achieve their objectives for environmentally-responsible biomanufacturing across a wide range of applications, including agri-food, biofuels, pharma, and more. For more information, please visit www.allozymes.com.