Aqua Bounty Technologies Completes First Tranche of $10 Million Financing
Proceeds to Fund Commercialization of AquaAdvantage Salmon(TM) and Shrimp IMS.
Aqua Bounty Technologies, Inc., says it has closed on the initial tranche of its $10 million Series D round of financing. The new investor, leading the round with an investment of $2.5 million, is SUS, Inc. SUS, Inc. was introduced to Aqua Bounty Technologies by ITF Global Partners, a NY based strategic bank.
"The funding will be used to complete the remaining human food safety and related studies required by the FDA to approve our lead product, AquaAdvantage Salmon, and to bring to market our patented shrimp immunostimulant, Shrimp IMS. Pending regulatory approval, the Company could begin commercializing our hybrid salmon as early as late 2004. Our other lead product, Shrimp IMS, promises to dramatically reduce the mortality rate in farmed shrimp and could be ready for market early next year, again, pending FDA approval," said Elliot Entis, President and CEO of Aqua Bounty Technologies. He added that, "We're still looking for co-investors to fill out the round. Those additional funds will be used to expand our pipeline of biotech products for the aquaculture industry."
Aqua Bounty Technologies has two categories of products: Improved fish broodstock that incorporates the Company's patented AquAdvantage(TM) advanced- hybrid gene cassette, and veterinary biologics and therapeutics to enhance both growth rate and disease resistance in shrimp.
The Company's AquAdvantage(TM) salmon, trout, and tilapia are advanced- hybrids that grow to market size in one-half the time normally required, with food-conversion rates that are 10-30% better than their traditional counterparts. While the Company's fish grow faster than existing farm-raised fish, they do not grow to be larger. "We are very excited by the positive change this can mean for aquaculture. Our technology will particularly benefit consumers in under-developed countries by lowering the costs of food production, while allowing for a more sustainable and environmentally friendly aquaculture industry everywhere. Less feed will be required to grow these fish, and with a dramatically shorter harvest cycle, more fish can be grown without increasing the amount of coastal areas dedicated to marine farming. Lower costs of production will also allow a greater number of fish to be grown in inland facilities, away from costal waters altogether," Mr. Entis continued.
Aqua Bounty Technologies has two lead shrimp products in development. The first, Shrimp IMS(R), is a protein-based shrimp feed additive that stimulates the natural immune system of shrimp. It has been field-tested in locations in Asia and the Americas, and has increased shrimp survival dramatically in disease prone areas. The second shrimp-based product is a therapeutic that promises to eliminate the deadliest of shrimp diseases, White Spot Virus. Field trials are expected to begin later this autumn.
About Aqua Bounty Technologies
Aqua Bounty Technologies is dedicated to improving the productivity of the $50 billion a year commercial aquaculture industry through biotechnology. The Company is positioned to become the premier provider of technology, germplasm, and fish products derived from revolutionary discoveries in the life sciences. The Company's initial products transform the economics of seafood production by radically shortening production horizons and extending yields through leading edge molecular techniques, thereby addressing many issues raised by environmental organizations today.
Formerly known as Aqua Bounty Farms, Inc., the company recently adopted its new name to better reflect its accelerated development and in-licensing of key marine biotechnology applications.