5 July 2023

30 Years "Biotech the Future"

BRAIN Biotech celebrated its 30th anniversary at its Zwingenberg site under the motto "Biotech the Future". The focus was on meetings with business partners and long-time companions.

The exact date of our company's founding was September 23, 1993, but we celebrated our 30th anniversary at our Zwingenberg location in June 2023 – with many good-humored guests and the best of weather. Our history in a nutshell: Founded under the name B.R.A.I.N. Biotechnology Research and Information Network GmbH, we now operate as BRAIN Biotech AG, and a German biotech start-up with a handful of employees has grown into an international group of companies with a total of around 330 employees.

“The concept of circular economy has been the basis of our business model from the very beginning and I think today we can all be very proud of what this company has achieved over the past years.”

Adriaan Moelker, CEO
BRAIN Biotech AG

We celebrated our anniversary over two days – with a varied symposium entitled "Biotech the Future", with an official ceremony with shareholders, customers, employees and guests from business, associations and local politics, and with a concluding evening event for our employees at the Zwingenberg site.

Circular economy concept as business basis

BRAIN Biotech was founded as a technology spin-off by a team of scientists from the University of Darmstadt and has always been a pioneer in industrial biotechnology. The discovery and characterization of specialized microbial strains and enzymes, the search for bioactive natural products and protein engineering have been the basis of the company's activities from the very beginning. Accelerated by the IPO on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in 2016 and several company acquisitions, the company has developed over the years into a provider of integrated solutions in the field of industrial biotechnology and has consistently expanded its enzyme product business. Today, the product portfolio comprises more than 500 products, mainly specialty enzymes for industry with a focus on nutrition, health and environment.

BRAIN Biotech AG, listed on the stock exchange, is the parent company of the internationally active BRAIN Biotech Group - with fermentation facilities in the UK and further production sites in continental Europe and the USA. In addition to the product business with specialty enzymes, the group offers research-intensive custom solutions based on enzyme technology, strain development, bioprocess development and natural product screening.

"For 30 years, BRAIN Biotech's excellently trained experts have been committed to developing solutions and products for sustainable industrial production using nature as a model," said CEO Adriaan Moelker during the ceremony with shareholders, customers, employees and guests from industry, associations and local politics at the Zwingenberg site. "The concept of circular economy has been the basis of our business model from the very beginning and I think today we can all be very proud of what this company has achieved over the past years," Moelker continued.

Proprietary CRISPR technology to shape future development

CEO Adriaan Moelker sees the company entering a new phase with the development of its own genome editing technology: "Our current activities in the field of genome editing, on which about 20 employees are working with great dedication and success, also form the basis for our future competitiveness. We are building our own CRISPR technology platform and developing an attractive business model to license the technology to industrial partners and for novel therapeutic applications. The market potential is considerable, as this technology is the basis for many biotechnological innovations in the fields of nutrition, health and the environment," said Moelker in his anniversary speech.

Dr. Martin Langer, one of the first employees, is now Managing Director at the Zwingenberg site. He says: "Zwingenberg is the nucleus of the BRAIN Biotech Group, which is now successfully positioned internationally. Here we develop innovative, sought-after solutions and products for sustainable business - for our partners as well as for our group companies. BRAIN operates at the heart of the bio-economy and is therefore ideally positioned to participate in the growth of this key industry and to make a significant contribution to sustainable industrial processes.

Biotech the Future - lively exchange among experts

During the "Biotech the Future" symposium, customers and business partners exchanged views on the diverse applications of industrial biotechnology in four moderated discussion panels. The topics and panelists:

Future enzyme development: Going digital?

What will the future of enzyme development look like? Together with Bettina Nestl (Innophore), Radka Snajdrova (Novartis) and Christina Vafiadi (Nestlé Research), moderator Jessica Rehdorf (BRAIN Biotech) led a fruitful discussion on artificial intelligence and in silico prediction of enzymes as a contribution to future food and drug synthesis.

Panel "Future Enzymes" (C) BRAIN Biotech

Sustainable food system: No longer a vision.

Raffael Wohlgensinger (Formo), Alexander Stephan (Alternative Proteins Expert), Roberto Vanin (Juicy River) and Andrew Ellis (Biocatalysts), moderated by Ludwig Klermund (WeissBioTech), talked about how biotechnology is already contributing to healthier food and a sustainable food system, and how precision fermentation can accelerate the journey.

Panel "Future Food" (C) BRAIN Biotech

Think circular - mission, principle, motto...

Dr. Anna-Maria Becker (FAU Erlangen-Nuremberg), Andreas Blatter (PX Services), Eva Vollmer (winemaker) and Janina S. Koelschbach (BRAIN Biotech) discussed in the third panel of our symposium how biotechnology can contribute to a bio-based circular economy. The moderator, Esther Gabor (BRAIN Biotech), knew how to bring the very different fields together.

Panel "Think circular" (C) BRAIN Biotech

Genome editing: Hot topic with many facets...

How genome editing is accelerating developments in biotechnology and beyond. Gabi Krczal (RLP AgroScience), Philipp Knyphausen (Bayer), Martin Hahn (Gelita) and Michael Krohn (Akribion Genomics in founding) exchanged views and opinions, moderated by Dirk Sombreok (Akribion Genomics in founding). In the end, they agreed that genome editing can help address future challenges in areas such as health, agriculture and nutrition.

Panel "Genome editing" (C) BRAIN Biotech

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