October 10, 2009

Algae startups partner

Two Seattle area companies utilizing algae to create biofuels, chemicals and others products today announced a partnership at the Annual Algal Biomass Summit in San Diego. As part of the deal, Seattle-based Blue Marble Energy will produce "high-margin biochemicals" from microalgae from Redmond-based Bionavitas.

Earlier this year, Bionavitas announced a scientific breakthrough to increase algae yields by introducing light rods deep in algae pools. The Light Immersion Technology, or LIT, can be used to more rapidly and cost-effectively produce algae for environmental remediation, nutraceutical and biofuel products.

"With the efficient algae-production capability of Bionavitas, and our ability to convert that algae into specialty biochemicals, it was a natural step for our companies to partner," said Blue Marble Energy CEO Kelly Ogilvie.

Blue Marble -- which is looking at ways to use algae to transform the products we eat, drink and wear-- raised money in July. It is primarily focused on the food and fragrance sectors.

The company said about 99 percent of those products are now created via petroleum, but it is looking to reverse that trend with renewable replacements for oil.

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