Tag: Science and Technology

Delaware Biotech Businesses Focus on Innovation

Delaware Biotech Businesses Focus on Innovation

31 OCTOBER, 2019

For Delaware biotech companies, innovation is booming. Attracted to a business environment ripe with opportunity, bioscience companies in the First State are finding it possible to grow in a very dynamic ways. While Delaware’s enviable location, low cost of doing business, and collaborative, business-friendly environment are some of the key factors attracting biotech businesses, Delaware’s focus on innovation and rich diversity in biosciences makes it a prime location.

With the fourth highest number of employed PhDs working in the fields of science, engineering and healthcare, and a strong workforce and talent bred by the major academic institutions in the state, biotech companies in Delaware are primed for innovation. Read on to learn how a few of the leaders in the biotech industry are innovating in Delaware.


Incyte is a global biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Wilmington, Delaware. Founded in 2002, Incyte is focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel medicines to meet serious unmet medical needs in oncology and inflammation and autoimmunity. Today, the Company employs more than 1,400 people in the US, Europe and Japan as it strives to discover and de-velop first-in-class and best-in-class medicines—advancing a diverse portfolio of large and small molecules.

Investing in Delaware has brought positive results according to Incyte’s CEO Hervé Hoppenot:

“It has been a very understanding community around us, from the county, from the city, from the state. I must say we have an extraordinarily positive support and frankly we stay out of the craziness of Boston, Palo Alto, Shanghai. We are very close to key academic centers which are basically not only bringing talent to our organization, but are also a place where we can do partnerships, scientific partner-ships… I think that Delaware is a place where we are taking root, putting our infrastructure, expanding our teams and it will be part of that adventure.”

Adesis, Inc.

Founded in 1991 as CB Research and Development in Newport, Delaware, Adesis, Inc. is one of the first boutique chemistry Contract Research Organizations (CROs) in North America. Today, Adesis is a leading custom organic synthesis CRO specializing in organic and organometallic synthesis to support the pharmaceuticals, biomaterials and catalyst industries.

Adesis is one of the fastest growing life sciences companies in America necessitating the expansion of their facilities. In October 2018, Adesis celebrated the grand opening of its new, state-of-the-art chemistry laboratories, where Adesis scientists perform leading-edge discovery, development, and commercialization services. Along with state and local Delaware officials, the Delaware Prosperity Partnership supported the expansion, awarding Adesis a $445,224 grant to help facilitate its growth, resulting in the creation of more high-tech jobs in Delaware.

Senator Tom Carper said it best when asked about the company’s latest expansion in Delaware:

“We are thrilled that Adesis chose to make Delaware its home, and we are rooting for the company’s continued success and growth. This expansion not only means job growth here and now in Delaware, but a level of innovation that can benefit generations to come.”

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Q&A with Christina Pellicane, I-Corps Program Administrator

Q&A with Christina Pellicane, I-Corps Program Administrator

7 OCTOBER, 2019

Why do you think the NSF I-Corps is valuable to starts-up in the science and engineering space?

The University of Delaware’s NSF I-Corps Sites provides grants of up to $3,000 and training to support team-based customer discovery research aimed at investigating the commercial viability and societal impact of a novel STEM technology or process.

Typically, academic researchers who begin down the path of commercialization never stop to ask themselves, “Does anyone care about my technology?” or, even more insightfully, “How does my technology solve a real problem in the world today?”

The I-Corps Site program provides a low-risk environment and a structured process to systematically validate (or invalidate!) components of a business model and ultimately determine whether the business has product-market fit.

Not only that, but the I-Corps site program also provides $3,000 in non-dilutive funding to get out of the building and talk to potential customers. This is an opportunity that didn’t exist for entrepreneurs even 10 years ago. If you wanted to start a startup, you had to bootstrap it or find an investor who believed in you. Academics are great at explaining how a technology works but I-Corps teaches them to learn why it’s valuable to customers.

How many train-the-trainer sessions have you conducted so far?

This cohort is our 15th and it’s the first we’ve done in partnership with the NYC Regional Innovation Node (NYCRIN). NYCRIN runs all of their regional programs as a train-the-trainer, which makes this collaboration very exciting. We’ve been able to train 12 fantastic adjuncts who all have experience as startup founders, CEOs, intrapreneurs or investors! Our bench of potential I-Corps Site instructors has dramatically increased this fall.

Having a larger bench of instructors is important for diversity and inclusion (67% of our current adjuncts-in-training are women or underrepresented minorities) as well as our capacity to train even more I-Corps Site teams going forward with highly-qualified entrepreneurship practitioners.

How do we measure the success of I-Corps?

Fail fast. Fail often. Failing isn’t something we usually celebrate at a university but, when it comes to entrepreneurship education, we do.

It’s important that success is measured by learning and not by validating what you thought might be true about your business model. From that lens, success is measured by talking to many potential customers about their pain points, pivoting and iterating and finally building a solution to a problem that the entrepreneur knows exists because they heard it repeatedly and directly from the voice of the customer.

In addition to measuring the number of customer interviews and strength of the business model, success is measured by the number of teams who received follow-on funding. A few of these funding sources are the NSF I-Corps Teams program, VentureWell’s E-Teams program, our Blue Hen Proof of Concept Program and our Summer Founders pre-accelerator program.

We strongly encourage I-Corps Site teams to apply for the national NSF I-Corps Teams grant, which provides a $50,000 grant and a longer, more intense Lean LaunchPad program.

Tell us more about Horn Entrepreneurship & I-Corps:

Horn Entrepreneurship serves as the University of Delaware’s creative engine for entrepreneurship education and advancement. Built and actively supported by successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders, Horn Entrepreneurship empowers aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs as they pursue new ideas for a better world.

Horn Entrepreneurship became an NSF I-Corps site in 2014 with the central aim of serving as an “Ecosystem Catalyst” for the university and the broader region. In the 4+ years post-award, the impacts and outcomes associated with the site suggest that this aim has been accomplished.

The National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (NSF I-Corps) site program provides specialized training and mini grants of up to $3,000 to help teams bridge the gap between academic research and product commercialization, University intellectual property, or any STEM-related technology. This program provides real-world, hands-on learning experience that improve the odds for successful products and processes that benefit society.

The entire Team will engage with industry stakeholders – including customers, partners and competitors. The team will also experience first-hand, the chaos and uncertainty of commercializing innovations and creating ventures.

This course will not teach you how to write a research paper, business plan or NSF grant proposal. It is also not an exercise to prove how smart you are in a lab / classroom, how well you use the research library, or if you can publish a paper. Rather, this course is about “getting out of the building.” You will spend a significant amount of time talking to customers and testing your hypotheses. You should not participate in the I-Corps program if you cannot commit the time to talk to customers.

Referenced webpages:

Blue Hen Proof of Concept Program: https://www.udel.edu/research-innovation/horn/venture-support/blue-hen-poc/

UD I-Corps Site: https://www.udel.edu/research-innovation/horn/venture-support/nsf-i-corps-sites/

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White Dog Labs and Cargill Team up to Offer Sustainable Fish Feed

White Dog Labs and Cargill team up to offer sustainable fish feed


Cargill, the global agricultural supply company, has entered an agreement with Newark-based White Dog Labs to develop sustainable alternatives to fishmeal in aqua feed.

The deal gives Cargill access to ProTyton, a patented single-cell protein developed by White Dog Labs that is produced by fermentation with corn feedstock.

The protein is set to ship out from White Dog Labs’ demo facility in Sutherland, Nebraska in 2020.

“This agreement underlines our commitment to sustainable aquaculture and discovering new and strategic ingredients that will help feed the world in a safe and responsible way,” said Adriano Marcon, president of Cargill’s aqua nutrition business. “ProTyton offers a good source of protein for fish and shrimp, an affordable feed ingredient for farmers and a sustainable option for the planet that lessens our reliance on fishmeal—which we know to be a finite resource.”

Starting off Cargill will offer ProTyton in salmon feed, with shrimp and other species on the horizon. In trials, salmon fed a diet containing ProTyton™ achieved a growth performance comparable to salmon on a conventional diet.

“We’re honored to partner with Cargill to lead the industry in the application of highly scalable, alternative proteins for aquaculture,” said Bryan Tracy, chief executive officer, White Dog Labs.

The agreement follows another collaboration for White Dog Labs. This summer the firm announced a strategic partnership with InnovaFeed to scale up and jointly market fish feed made with insect protein.

This article was originally posted on the Delaware Business Times at: https://www.delawarebusinesstimes.com/white-dog-labs-sustainable-fish-feed/

Kurt Foreman


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Premier Research Campus Available

Premier Research Campus Available

11 JUNE, 2019

Available: Premier Research Campus

974 Centre Rd. Wilmington, DE 19805

  • First time on the market.
  • 444,000 sq ft of laboratory and support space.
  • Master planned development includes 14 buildings. Existing space totals 788,000 sq ft.
  • Seven stand-alone buildings, totaling 468,000 sq ft available for lease.
  • Existing infrastructure includes chemical, engineering, and process laboratories.
  • Campus served by central utility plant for the generation of chilled water and steam.
  • Highly flexible traditional poured concrete and steel constructed buildings.
  • Land available for potential build-to-suit opportunity

Click here for a campus map.

For more information:

Becky Harrington
Director, Business Development

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Biotech Leaders Answer the Question “Why Delaware?”

A Delaware Institution on the Business Benefits of Delaware

4 JUNE, 2019

June 3 marks the day DowDuPont was officially laid to rest, and DuPont rose again.

Actually, it’s a lot more complicated than that, but the long-planned DowDuPont “three-way-split” means that Delaware has a “new” DuPont Company focusing on science and innovation products (including clean water tech and smart electronics) and a new agriscience company, Corteva, both with headquarters in Wilmington.

(DuPont’s former chemical branch, Chemours, is still based in Delaware, with brand-new construction going up on the University of Delaware STAR Campus in Newark.)

The two companies currently have about 100 job openings in Delaware, and that’s expected to rise by quite a bit post-split.

As it happens, June 3 was also the kickoff of the international BIO2019 in Philadelphia, and DelawareBio hosted the Biotech Ecosystem Tour, starting at Incyte in Wilmington and ending at the STAR Campus.

Some of Delaware’s biotech leaders — including Christiana Care Health System CEO Janice NevinIncyte CEO Hervé HoppenotAdesis CEO Andrew Cottone and LabWare CEO Vance Kershner, along with Delaware Secretary of State Jeff BullockDelaware Prosperity Partnership CEO Kurt Foreman and Delaware Innovation Space CEO Bill Provine — participated in a panel as part of the event.

The big question: Why should biotech companies choose Delaware?

“Delaware is small in size but big in spirit,” said Hoppenot, whose cancer pharmaceutical company (which unveiled its new global headquarters on the former site of Wanamakers on Augustine Cutoff in 2017) has hired about 1200 people over the last couple of years. “It’s near Penn and Johns Hopkins. The talent is here.”

And, while Delaware’s proximity to Philadelphia, New York and Washington D.C. is considered a draw for all kinds of industries, when it comes to biotech, that advantage is magnified.

“Washington to New York is the new ‘Innovation Corridor,’” said Nevin, “and we’re right in the middle of it.”

And our neighbors are not the competition, as the industry in the region often works together.

“It would be different if we were an island,” said Foreman.

Some advantages call back to the state’s DuPont legacy.

“There are a lot of “retired” scientists in Delaware helping companies get things done,” said Kershner. “You won’t find that anywhere else.”

Cottone’s phrase “Delaware moves at the speed on entrepreneurship” made an impact on the panelists, who agreed — the entrepreneurial ecosystem for biotech is fast-moving, from fast-turnaround funding to speedy access to wet labs and work spaces.

The state has strong legislation that protects intellectual property, an Angel Investor’s Tax Credit and EDGE grants for small businesses.

“We’re not a backwater town,” said Secretary of State Bullock. “We can run with the big dogs.”

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Stop by the Delaware Booth at BIO 2019

Stop by the Delaware booth at BIO 2019

4 JUNE, 2019

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Biotech Institute Expanding to New Space on STAR Campus

Biotech Institute expanding to new space on STAR campus


The Delaware Biotechnology Institute will expand into 70,000 square feet within the new six-story, $160 million Biopharmaceutical Innovation Building on the STAR Campus next February.

The building, which includes labs, offices, collaborative space, and shared research instrumentation facilities, will be the home of the National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals (NIIMBL), a UD-led coalition of 150 companies, educational institutions, nonprofits and state governments.

Biopharmaceuticals are prescription drugs made with living cells.

“We need more space to support the expanding needs of life science researchers across campus,” said Dr. John Koh, the interim director of DBI and a UD professor in chemistry and biochemistry. “We’re not abandoning our current site, but expanding and moving our core facilities to support current and future initiatives on STAR campus. There’s an enormous difference between office space and wet research space. Being in the new building will also help us support the new NIIMBL program.”

The Delaware Biotechnology Institute is a magnet for life-science research and development. The institute supports multidisciplinary, collaborative research at all of Delaware’s research organizations, including the University of Delaware, Delaware State University, Christiana Care Health System, Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children, Wesley College, and Delaware Technical and Community College.

The Institute houses research laboratories with scientists, students, and faculty working on projects related to agriculture, human health, and energy and the environment and also makes available high-end instrumentation facilities to Delaware’s entire life-science community. DBI researchers are focused on advanced sequencing technologies, imaging technologies, and computational capabilities.

NIIMBL is funded through a $70 million cooperative agreement with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the U.S. Department of Commerce and leverages additional commitments from partners.

Koh said the new building will be occupied by UD faculty from four colleges and will help faculty and staff that will help launch a new program in pharmaceutical sciences at the university. The Delaware Biotechnology Institute will take a little over two floors of the six-story building besides the 70,000 square feet it has in its current location at 15 Innovation Way.

This article was originally posted on the Delaware Business Times at: https://www.delawarebusinesstimes.com/biotech-institute-expanding/

Kurt Foreman


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Wilmington Becoming a Tech Hub

Wilmington becoming a tech hub


There’s a huge demand for technology professionals — and for good reason.

Almost everything about our behaviors as consumers is changing, becoming more digital, meaning that the companies that serve us have to become digital as well.

At M&T Bank, we recognize that organizations need to be adaptable in order to find success in the future, a change largely driven by technology.

We recently announced plans to hire hundreds of professionals in Delaware in the next few years, including about 200 technologists. Our goal is to make Wilmington a destination for tech talent, and we plan to embed our new tech hires with all the other employees driving the growth in our downtown offices.

Choosing Wilmington was no mistake. Wilmington offers businesses like ours a unique opportunity to work with local government, higher education, non-government organizations, startups, and other private corporations to create a unique ecosystem conducive to the very tech talent hub we are working to build.

Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Wilmington offers a lower cost of living and stronger sense of community when compared to the top-tier cities competing for the very same tech talent.

So we asked ourselves, how can M&T Bank be part of the solution in cultivating and bringing tech talent to Delaware? To put it simply, we saw an opportunity to bring our use of technology in-house and place it within the communities we serve.

We think this gives us an edge in differentiating our products and services, but it also challenges us to build a strong tech community in Delaware.

To create alternate pipelines for hard-to-find tech talent, we will establish a technology development program in partnership with higher education institutions such as the University of Delaware and other colleges. We have also committed to partnerships with programs such as Zip Code Wilmington, which coaches motivated people from diverse backgrounds into skilled, professional developers.

Kurt Foreman


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Delaware Taking the Lead in the Bioscience Sector

Delaware taking the lead in the bioscience sector

Showcasing its strength at the BIO 2019 International Convention

(Wilmington, Delaware) Delaware will showcase its distinctive strength in the Bio supply chain at the international BIO Convention in Philadelphia from June 3 to 6. More than 18,000 venture capitalists, scientists, researchers and start-ups from 70 countries are expected to attend.

Eric Kmiec, Ph.D., director of the Gene Editing Institute at Christiana Care Health System and a pioneer of the CRISPR system, is leading the gene editing section at the convention. In addition, 17 Delaware bioscience experts will serve as judges in the startup competition. Delaware will have an expansive exhibit, which will include space to facilitate one-on-one meetings.

This year, Delaware is offering a limited-capacity tour of the state’s bioscience capabilities to conference attendees. The tour will stop in Wilmington, at the headquarters of Incyte, the biopharmaceutical research company ranked by Forbes as one of the nation’s top 10 most innovative companies. At Incyte, the group will hear a panel discussion featuring Incyte’s CEO, Hervé Hoppenot.

After Incyte, the tour will head to the University of Delaware’s STAR campus in Newark. The former auto assembly plant now hosts a variety of high-tech science and research companies and offers more than 10,000 square feet of wet labs. STAR (which stands for Science, Technology and Advanced Research) is home to the nation’s highest ranked physical therapy degree program as well as NIIMBL (National Institute for Innovation in Manufacturing Biopharmaceuticals). It will soon be home to Chemours Global Research as well.

“Delaware has the fourth highest number of employed PhDs working in science, engineering and healthcare,” said Kurt Foreman, President and CEO of the Delaware Prosperity Partnership, the organization that manages statewide economic development for the state of Delaware. “Add to that its enviable location, low cost of doing business, and collaborative, business-friendly environment and you see why Delaware is becoming the go-to location for science and tech start-ups. Our 7th place ranking in the Milken Institute’s State Technology and Science Index underscored that Delaware is taking the lead in the bioscience field.”

“Delaware has a uniquely expansive array of bioscience businesses,” said Helen Stimson, CEO and President of the Delaware BioScience Association. “Unlike other states, Delaware’s strength is its focus on innovation and its rich diversity of bioscience companies, including precision instrumentation, consumables, recombinant proteins, monoclonal antibodies, contract research organizations and contract manufacturing organizations.”

About BIO
The BIO International Convention is hosted by the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO). BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

BIO performs many services for members, but the most visible is the coordination of the BIO International Convention. The BIO International Convention helps BIO fulfill its mission to help grow the global biotech industry. The key benefits of attending the BIO International Convention are access to global biotech and pharma leaders via BIO One-on-One Partnering, exposure to industry thought-leaders with over 1,500 education sessions , and unparalleled networking opportunities with 18,000+ attendees from 70+ countries.

About Delaware Prosperity Partnership
Created in 2017, Delaware Prosperity Partnership (DPP) is the nonprofit that leads the state of Delaware’s economic development efforts to attract, grow and retain businesses; to build a stronger entrepreneurial and innovation ecosystem; and to support private employers in identifying, recruiting and developing talent in the state of Delaware. For more information, visit www.choosedelaware.com.

About Delaware BioScience Association
Formed in early 2006, Delaware BioScience Association (Delaware Bio) has brought together pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms, medical device manufacturers, agricultural biotech and chemical companies, research and testing companies, hospitals and medical institutions, and other organizations and related service companies, with the shared goal of expanding the state’s vibrant science economy.

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Ashland Moving Corporate Headquarters to Delaware by 2020

Ashland moving corporate headquarters to Delaware by 2020

3 AUGUST, 2018

Ashland Inc.’s announcement that it is moving its headquarters and less than 100 jobs to Delaware marks an investment in a state where the company has had a convoluted and, at times, controversial history.

The new headquarters will be located at 500 Hercules Road in Brandywine Springs, where the company already has an office campus with about 235 workers. The move is expected to happen by Jan. 1 2020.

“Ashland has a long history of innovation and success, including right here in Delaware,” Gov. John Carney said via email. “We’re thrilled they have selected Delaware for their corporate headquarters. This is additional proof that Delaware remains a great place for companies of any size to put down roots, grow, and create jobs.”

The move to Delaware will follow a corporate downsizing at the 94-year-old company that recently fell out of the Fortune 500.

Ashland says it will be “significantly downsizing” its current headquarters in Covington, Kentucky, in advance of the relocation with some of the 48 jobs there being eliminated and others being moved to its facility in Dublin, Ohio.

The remainder will be brought to Delaware, along with employees from its offices in Lexington, Kentucky. About 58 people work at that office, although some of those jobs also will be eliminated or relocated to Dublin, while other employees will be asked to work remotely.

The downsizing is part of a plan Ashland CEO William Wulfsohn announced in May to cut $120 million in expenses. Workers at the two Kentucky offices affected by the move were told of the downsizing on Tuesday.

Ashland saw its stock price jump to a 10-year high of $85.60 per share after the announcement, which coincided with a third-quarter earnings report that showed sales up 12 percent and a $66 million positive swing in net revenue compared to last year.

Founded in Kentucky 94 years ago, Ashland first became a household name here when the company purchased former Hercules Inc. for $3.3 billion in 2008.

Hercules was broken out of the DuPont Co. and once employed 1,800 people at the global headquarters it built in downtown Wilmington. But the company began to falter in the early 2000s after a series of questionable business decisions, leading to its eventual sale.

Ashland later moved its new acquisition out of the city, leaving 125,600 square feet of space vacant in Wilmington’s Hercules Plaza.

Despite the move, Delaware agreed in 2012 to provide Ashland with $10 million worth of taxpayer grants in exchange for the company’s promise to add 300 jobs in five years, bringing its total local workforce to more than 800. The deal was one of the largest economic development incentive packages approved under former Gov. Jack Markell.

But just two years later, Ashland sold its Delaware-based water technologies business to a private investment firm, which renamed the new standalone company Solenis. That business is now headquartered at the 21st Century Plaza in Brandywine Hundred.

The remaining company failed to reach its hiring goal and in 2015 was forced to repay nearly $335,000 of the state grant money it had received up to that point.

The same year, the now-defunct Delaware Economic Development Office helped Solenis win a $1.1 million taxpayer grant to help the company add 122 additional jobs by 2017 – a deal that would have brought its total Delaware workforce to 336. The company exceeded that goal by 31 jobs, state officials said Thursday.

No financial incentives have been offered to Ashland in connection with its impending move to New Castle County, according to the Delaware Prosperity Partnership.

The DPP was created by the General Assembly last summer when DEDO was dissolved and its responsibilities split between the new public-private partnership and the Division of Small Business.

Ashland’s impending relocation marks the first major accomplishment for the new organization since its new CEO Kurt Foreman took the helm in April.

“There wasn’t a lot of selling involved because they already were familiar with Delaware,” Foreman said. “It was more about being ready with the information they were looking for to help them make their decision.”

While Foreman said he is happy to have helped Ashland, he stressed that attracting new companies will not be the sole focus of the partnership.

“We want that to be only one part of our strategy,” he said. “There is nothing better than for those companies we want to bring here to see existing companies in the state grow and thrive. That’s a big part of where our focus is.”

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Uber for Packages: Delaware’s DeliveryCircle will Remain in State

Uber for packages: Delaware’s DeliveryCircle will remain in state

20 JUNE, 2018

When it came time to search for funding, Delaware-based DeliveryCircle faced a dilemma: Let investors on the West Coast move their operation across the country or find money that would enable the delivery service company to stay where it’s rooted.

“I personally always wanted to stay in Delaware,” said CEO and founder Vijaya Rao. “I had been pushing back.”

DeliveryCircle works in a similar way as tech transportation companies such as Uber and Lyft, except it deals in packages instead of people. Drivers on the platform run the gamut from professional couriers, stay-at-home moms, seniors and part-time contractors.

The business that launched in February 2014 got the best of both worlds when it came to new financing. DeliveryCircle announced last week it had raised a “significant minority investment” from financial and strategic supply chain investors, led by Cambridge Capital, NFI and other strategic investors.

Now based at the Christiana Corporate Center after graduating from the incubator at New Castle County’s Emerging Enterprise Center, DeliveryCircle will continue its rapid expansion in the ever-growing delivery service space.

Rao said the strategic partnership is “not just somebody giving us a checkbook.” The supply chain investors, she said, will better position DeliveryCircle to continue to grow as “last mile delivery” from businesses to consumers becomes more critical, especially in same-day service, which DeliveryCircle now provides in 19 states and more than 5,000 zip codes.

For perspective, the startup opened service with five drivers and 20 zip codes. There are now more than 900 drivers – all are contractors – on the platform, Rao said.

The company has just eight employees but some funding will go toward hiring back office management and finance positions in Delaware, Rao said.

Staying in Delaware was more than just staying where the company has been rooted. The space between New York and D.C. has proved to be a good location so far.

“We have kind of saturated that belt,” Rao said. “Of course, there is still room to grow. For us it makes sense.”

The company has national aspirations, though.

Rao said the company has grown 300 percent year-over-year during the last three years.

DeliveryCircle’s software and mobile application enable clients to match package sizes with a pool of professional, safe drivers and a variety of vehicle types.

“It’s no longer a hypothesis of a model,” Rao said. “It’s very much a working model.”

Originally, Rao said DeliveryCircle focused on being a business-to-business company. But as activity in the retail space increased, the demand to adapt into a business-to-consumer model increased.

On its website, DeliveryCircle says it works with brands such as Zoe’s Kitchen, Honeybaked Ham, Philly Foodworks and other food companies. Rao said DeliveryCircle also has contracts signed with larger brands and retailers for delivery services.

Most of the small companies DeliveryCircle works with come from referrals, Rao said. The company has not spent any money on marketing.

Rao said money from last week’s Series A funding announcement will go to hiring more full-time employees, business development and the continued geographical growth.

Moving west, it appears, was inevitable anyway.

Contact reporter Jeff Neiburg at (302) 983-6772, jneiburg@delawareonline.com or on Twitter @Jeff_Neiburg.

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DowDuPont’s $200 Million Investment in Delaware

DowDuPont’s $200 Million Investment in Delaware

13 JUNE, 2018

DowDuPont officials and Delaware politicians are beaming about scores of newly designed laboratories housed within an Experimental Station building that received a $200 million facelift during the past year.

Gov. John Carney said the investment demonstrates that DuPont will continue to drive Delaware’s economy, even after it spins off from the DowDuPont holding company in June of 2019.

DowDuPont to move up to 150 jobs to the Experimental Station, near Wilmington

“Now, DuPont is obviously going to have a smaller footprint in terms of employees in our state than it did when I was growing up,” he said, “but when you talk about what drives the economy; it’s research, development, science, and technology.”

Before a ribbon-cutting event on Friday, Carney was among state politicians given a tour of the renovated building, which featured oxygen-free chambers to study gut bacteria and high-tech sequencers to analyze microbial data.

The building is the new headquarters of DowDuPont’s consolidated Industrial Biosciences division — a business that specializes in creating enzymes for a variety of products.

DowDuPont’s renovated Industrial Biosciences headquarters at the Experimental Station could be a signal of future investment in the state by the venerable company. (Photo: Courtesy of DowDupont)

The organic catalysts allow laundry detergent to function in cold water. They keep bread from going stale. And, they can create healthy bacteria in the stomachs of chickens.

They also bring in $2.1 billion annually for DowDuPont.

DowDuPont profit hits $1.1 billion on higher demand and increased prices Company officials say the new facility will give the firm an edge against competitors in a race to recruit top talent.

“Our job is to attract the best and brightest scientists in the world,” DuPont facilities director Chris Koelsch said. “So that’s what we’re doing.”

Today, the Experimental Station, which has been the center of the DuPont’s research and development for generations, has 2,000 employees. The number includes 400 people who work for companies that rent space at the property.

DowDuPont’s renovated Industrial Biosciences headquarters at the Experimental Station. (Photo: Courtesy of DowDupont)

By 2020, the facility will house 2,600 people, an increase that will include transfers coming from a former-Dow Chemical facility in Collegeville, Pennsylvania.

“There will be some growth, some of which is coming in from out of state, and some of which is new hires,” said Marc Doyle, chief operating officer for the company’s Specialty Products Division. “We’re having to add some roles to meet the demands both from growth from the economy as well as establishing the standalone company.”

The $200 million spending on the renovated building also is significant for the company because it is a shift from a decade of turmoil for DuPont.

Past years were marked by layoffs of thousands of long-term employees, a vicious proxy battle with activist investors, and the shedding of non-core assets, such as the Hotel DuPont and the DuPont Country Club.

In those recent years, Koelsch said, DuPont failed to sufficiently fund all of its needed infrastructure. That is changing, he said.

“There was some under-capitalization in years past,” he said. “We got a $200 million investment to start the journey here on a transformation.”

Though DowDuPont is investing in state-of-the-art research facilities, its CEO Ed Breen last month said the company has decided to avoid large research and development projects. Those “moonshots,” Breen said, cost the most money and take multiple years of research.

“When I got to the company, we killed almost all of what I call the moonshot projects,” said Breen while speaking at the Bernstein Strategic Decisions Conference in May.

Breen replaced Ellen Kullman as CEO in 2015, following a battle with investor Nelson Peltz, which was largely over the size of the venerable company’s significant investments in R&D.

One project Breen cited as too large and too risky was the company’s $225 million endeavor to produce ethanol from corn stalks. DuPont in 2017 put up for sale the project’s center of operations in Iowa.

Breen submitted a plan to the company’s board in early May, which laid out its leaner R&D efforts.

“Most of our projects now are $10, $20, $30 million,” he said. “They’re safe. It’s hard to blow those. It’s easy to track them. They’re just less risky.”

DuPont facilities director Chris Koelsch on Friday describes multiple renovations planned for the DuPont

DowDuPont formed last August after a $150 billion merger between Delaware-based DuPont and Michigan’s Dow Chemicals. In May, the company reported net sales for the first quarter of 2018 at just over $21.5 billion, up 5 percent from the two companies operations a year earlier.

By 2019, three companies will be formed from the merged entity. First to leave will be the company’s Material Sciences Division around April of next year. It will be headquartered in Michigan.

The Specialty Products and Agriculture divisions, both of which will be based in Delaware, will separate shortly thereafter.

Specialty Products will be given the name DuPont, while agriculture will be called Corteva Agriscience.

Prior to the split, Materials and Agriculture each is shedding over $1 billion in costs, with Specialty’s expected savings to come in just under $1 billion.

The company has not revealed who might lead the new companies. Doyle, who is the head of Specialty Products, declined to say if he will become CEO of the new DuPont.

“We’ll see. I’m just focused on trying to get the company set up for success,” he said.

Asked about which companies will take on DuPont’s billions of dollars in pension liabilities, Doyle said, “We’re working on it.”

“It’s a really important subject and we’ll have more to say later this year,” he said.

Contact Karl Baker at kbaker@delawareonline.com or (302) 324-2329. Follow him on Twitter @kbaker6.

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