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Diversa and Celunol Complete Merger to Create Verenium

Diversa Corporation and Celunol Corp. have completed their previously-announced merger transaction (earlier post) to create Verenium Corporation.

Verenium owns a growing portfolio of specialty enzyme products and unique technical and operational capabilities designed to enable the production of low-cost, biomass-derived sugars for a multitude of major industrial applications. The most significant near-term commercial opportunity for Verenium will be the large-scale commercial production of cellulosic ethanol derived from multiple biomass feedstocks.

Verenium recently completed a significant upgrade of one of the nation’s first operational cellulosic ethanol pilot facilities located in Jennings, Louisiana and expects to achieve mechanical completion of a 1.4 million gallon-per-year, demonstration-scale facility to produce cellulosic ethanol by the end of 2007.

In addition, the Company's process technology has been licensed by Tokyo-based Marubeni Corp. and Tsukishima Kikai Co., LTD and has been incorporated into BioEthanol Japan’s 1.4 million liter-per-year cellulosic ethanol plant in Osaka, Japan—the world’s first commercial-scale plant to produce cellulosic ethanol from wood construction waste. (Earlier post.)

Verenium begins operations with numerous unique attributes, including:

  • Fully-integrated, end-to-end capabilities in pre-treatment, novel enzyme development, fermentation, engineering, and project development;

  • One of the only operational cellulosic ethanol pilot plants in the United States;

  • A 1.4 million gallon-per-year demonstration-scale facility, currently under construction, to produce cellulosic ethanol from sugarcane bagasse and specially-bred energy cane;

  • A diverse and growing portfolio of commercialized industrial enzyme products; and

  • More than 300 issued or in-licensed patents for its technologies and processes, as well as over 450 pending patents.

Verenium will be structured and managed as three distinct, but interdependent, organizational units:

  • Specialty Enzymes Business Unit. The Specialty Enzymes Business Unit currently generates commercial revenue from multiple sources, including industrial enzyme product sales, technology licenses, strategic partnerships, and government grants.

  • Biofuels Business Unit. The Biofuels Business Unit will be primary focused on the commercial-scale production and sale of cellulosic ethanol from company-managed production facilities throughout the US, as well as strategic partnerships and related revenue arrangements around the world.

  • Research and Development. The Research and Development organization's primary goal will be to support both Verenium Business Units, as well as various existing strategic collaborative partners.

As of 31 March 2007, the Company had cash, cash-equivalents, and short-term investments on hand of approximately $125.5 million, which, together with approximately $20 million received in early April from the exercise of an over-allotment option related to the recent convertible notes offering, it believes to be sufficient to fund operations through at least 2008.

Verenium’s Board of Directors will initially consist of nine members, six from Diversa and three from Celunol, including Mr. Riva. The non-employee Board members are: Dr. James Cavanaugh, who will serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors; Peter Johnson; Fernand Kaufmann, Ph.D.; Mark Leschly; Melvin Simon, Ph.D.; Cheryl Wenzinger; Joshua Ruch; and Michael Zak.

The Company's executive management team is being led by Carlos A. Riva, President, Chief Executive Officer, and Director, and John A. McCarthy, Jr., Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer.

Verenium will be headquartered in Cambridge, Massachusetts and have research and operations facilities in San Diego, California; Jennings, Louisiana; and Gainesville, Florida. Due to the complementary nature of the two companies and the level of development activities being pursued, the company anticipates increasing its staff in Cambridge and Jennings, as well as building additional staff over time in San Diego to support the growth of the enzyme business and research and development efforts of the Company.



I believe we are on the verge of licking this cellulosic
ethanol production problem. Where is all of this ethanol going? Where's the market? There's no infrastructure for dispensing it here in California yet. Where are the ethanol burning cars? I don't want to settle for E10.

Don't worry about having to produce as much ethanol as
the petrol we have been consuming. Plug-in hybrids will
lessen the need for that kind of volume.

If we go electric, so much the better.


This is a company betting heavily on intellectual property - 400 patents pending??

There is legislation in the new Energy bill to build out the E85 infrastructure. But it will be a challenge as I suspect that big brand gas stations will attempt to slow its growth. Best is for off branded, independent stations to install pumps and for anyone with a flex vehicle to ASK for E85 at their fuel stations.

In California the Governator could fasttrack E85 along with his H2 initiatives. It is the leading energy consuming State.


A friend said he just "discovered" that his vehicle is "dual fuel" E85 capable. He discovered this when he had to replace a fuel filter and it cost him $100. My vote is for full E10 blend nationwide before bothering with infrastructure costs for E85.

Alex Pounds

From Alex Pounds
153 Nelson Mandela squire
Charity House Fat 42,
Fourth floor.
Johannes Burg South Africa.

Email;[email protected]

Attn; C.E.O

My name is Alex Pounds, the first son of the late James Pounds. I will be 21years old on the 22nd of March next year. My dad, the late J. C. Pounds was a very prosperous farmer in Zimbabwe before the current onslaught on white owned farm lands. My father was one of the first victims of the cleansing.

He died in the struggle against the supporters of the evil Robert Mugabe. We lost our mum soon after from heart complications. We have since been evicted from our home and are since living in South Africa as refugees with my two little sisters.
But before his death my father told me on his death bed about a certain deposit he made with a finance company here in South Africa.

He subsequently handed me over all the relevant documents regarding the deposit. The money was meant for the purchase of heavy duty equipments/machineries from Europe but unfortunately the prevailing situation at home then forced him to have a rethink.

This deposit was mostly cash money to the tone of $17.3million US dollars and precious stones. I need you to help us clear out this money as my age and immigration standing in this country forbids me from being in control of such huge amount. And I donft want to deal with any of the locals here because of the danger such partnership will put my life to.

We need someone trustworthy to help us (me and my two little sisters) with travel invitations, transfer this fund out of here and help us with investment proposals there in your country. We want to start a new life out of Africa as this place evokes sad memories.
For your effort, l promise you an offer of 25% of the total money if you can prove that you can be trusted to deliver. Please I'm waiting for your urgently response, If your willing to help us.

Remain blessed.
Alex Pounds.

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