Amyris, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMRS) is engaged in the development and production of sustainable ingredients for the Health & Wellness, Clean Beauty and Flavors & Fragrances markets. Shares surged 40.83% through early trading on Tuesday, February 5, 2019. Over the past three months, Amyris has seen an average daily volume of 1.32 million shares. However, through Tuesday morning, already 23.08 million shares have traded hands, equating to $102.73 million in dollar volume.
Shares surged Tuesday morning after Amyris announced a cannabinoid development, licensing, and commercialization partnership with a confidential partner. The proposed agreement is valued at $255 million, including an upfront cash payment and milestones, which are expected to be reached over the next 12-36 months following the execution of the agreement. Amyris would utilize its proprietary technology platform “to scale No Compromise™ sustainable products and successfully bring them to commercialization.” The final agreement is expected to be completed by the end of March 2019. John Melo, President and CEO of Amyris, commented, “We share the mission of our partners to become the leader in sustainably-sourced CBD products in the near term as we focus on enabling the global beverage and skin care markets, including our own brands, to support the health and wellness of people and our planet.” Here is the full press release detailing Amyris’s new partnership:
Amyris, Inc. Press Release:
EMERYVILLE, Calif., Feb. 05, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Amyris, Inc. (AMRS), a leader in the development and production of sustainable ingredients for the Health & Wellness, Clean Beauty and Flavors & Fragrances markets, today announced that it has signed a binding term sheet for a planned cannabinoid development, licensing and commercialization partnership valued at up to $255 million (not including significant royalties once the products are commercialized) with a confidential partner. The $255 million in payments include an upfront payment and the remainder are linked to milestones that are expected over the next 12-36 months following the signing of a definitive final agreement. Amyris has a successful track record of leveraging its unique technology platform to scale No Compromise™ sustainable products and successfully bring them to commercialization. In addition to lab-based milestone payments, this agreement also provides for significant milestone payments for commercially scaling each product.
As Amyris’s proprietary technology platform has become more widely known, it has become the recognized leader in bringing products to market faster and more cost effectively compared to any other company. Amyris is the preferred partner for the world’s leading companies for its technology and its success in bringing high performance, No Compromise™ products to market.
Today’s announcement is another example of Amyris being sought out for its advanced technology platform, this time for the development of cannabinoids. Both parties are committed to executing a final definitive agreement by the end of March with development to begin immediately and commercialization of products expected within the next 18-24 months assuming appropriate regulatory approvals.
Amyris is leading the way in sugarcane fermentation among private and publicly-traded companies alike, having brought many products to market with commercial success. These products include a World Health Organization recommended first-line treatment for malaria that has saved thousands of lives and many products in the flavors and fragrances, personal care and health and wellness markets. The company’s most recent successful product developed is its new, zero calorie sweetener with the best taste profile available to enable everyone, including those managing diabetes and obesity, to enjoy the sweetness of sugar without the negative health consequences of artificial sweeteners or the bitterness of stevia-sourced products. This product has quickly become the leader in sales volume for the natural sweeteners category and the fastest growing product in the Amyris portfolio.
“We are pleased to have been recognized by a well-capitalized partner as the company best suited to leverage fermentation-based technology in the production of the best quality and lowest cost and sustainably-produced cannabinoids,” said John Melo, Amyris President & CEO. “The dollar value of this agreement and our roster of partners who are leaders in global markets combines to be a strong endorsement of our technology platform and ability to bring No Compromise™, sustainably-produced products to market. We share the mission of our partners to become the leader in sustainably-sourced CBD products in the near term as we focus on enabling the global beverage and skin care markets, including our own brands, to support the health and wellness of people and our planet.”
Significant Expected Benefits of Fermentation-Based Cannabinoid Products
Products derived from fermentation are anticipated by Amyris to have several significant benefits for market participants and consumers. These include:
Consistent purity and dosage depending on formulation due to highly controlled fermentation-based production without the variability resulting from plant-based ingredients
Fermentation high purity, which should support lower regulatory risk
Significantly reduced cost over traditional production methods
Improved yield of economically difficult-to-source compounds with sufficient purity and efficacy
100% free from pesticides, as ingredients are not farm or grow operation sourced
Sustainably-sourced products derived from rainfall-hydrated, natural sugarcane feedstock that results in less water and land usage relative to growing cannabinoids
Expected Development, Licensing and Commercialization Partnership Terms
The partner is expected to provide initially lab-based and later commercial scale milestone cash payments in tranches for the development and scaling of technology to produce CBD. In return, the partner will be granted a license to commercialize these products. Total expected aggregate cash payments assuming development and commercial viability are expected to add up to $255 million.
All R&D work executed by Amyris will be conducted in compliance with all U.S. federal laws regarding controlled substances with adherence to state agency regulations.
Additional Royalty Revenues
In addition to the milestone payments and assuming commercialization is achieved, Amyris will be eligible to receive substantial ongoing royalty payments. These payments are expected to be significant given the size of the global cannabinoid market.
Amyris is the integrated renewable products company that is enabling the world’s leading brands to achieve sustainable growth. Amyris applies its innovative bioscience solutions to convert plant sugars into hydrocarbon molecules and produce specialty ingredients and consumer products. The company is delivering its No Compromise™ products and services across a number of markets, including specialty and performance chemicals, flavors and fragrances, cosmetics ingredients, pharmaceuticals, and nutraceuticals. More information about the company is available at www.Amyris.com.
This release contains forward-looking statements, and any statements other than statements of historical fact could be deemed to be forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements regarding future events, such as the anticipated entry by Amyris into a proposed commercial partnership relating to cannabinoid development, including the expected timing for executing a definitive agreement relating to the partnership, anticipated product development and commercialization, the expected timing for reaching lab- and commercial scale-based milestones, and anticipated development and royalty payments to Amyris, including the amount and timing thereof, the expected benefits of cannabinoid products derived from fermentation, including the cost, purity and efficacy thereof, and Amyris’s anticipated market position and leadership. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and actual results and future events may differ materially due to risks and uncertainties, including risks related to Amyris’s liquidity and ability to fund operating and capital expenses, potential delays or failures in development, production and commercialization of products, risks related to Amyris’s reliance on third parties, and other risks detailed from time to time in filings Amyris makes with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Annual Reports on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Amyris disclaims any obligation to update information contained in these forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.
Article By: Andrew Rego