NUMAFERM revolutionizes peptide production and receives seed financing
May 11, 2017
The Dusseldorf university spin-off NUMAFERM specializes in the biotechnical production of peptides and is able, through its newly developed platform technology, to dramatically reduce costs for this raw material. For the further technological development and an accelerated market entry, NUMAFERM GmbH is now receiving funding in the seven-digit range. High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF), Qiagen co-founders and European Business Angels Prof. Detlev Riesner and Dr. Jürgen Schumacher, as well as the European Investment Fund are participating.
At the core of NUMAFERM is a fermentative process which assists in the plannable high yield production of peptides. To date, the production of peptides has primarily been driven by chemical syntheses, which are expensive, environmentally damaging and time consuming. This results in an average price of 1 million euros per kilogram of peptide. Until now, biotechnical approaches have only succeeded in exceptional cases and the German biotechnology company would like to break this paradigm. The technology holds great potential in pharmaceuticals considering the pipeline of more than 500 peptide-based drug candidates. Through cost reduction, peptides can also be made accessible for entirely new applications, for example special adhesives, feed additives and surface coating.
The basis of the technology is the research work of the co-founder Dr. Christian Schwarz, which evolved within the framework of his doctorate at Heinrich-Heine-University in Dusseldorf.
The HTGF, as well as both Business Angels and Qiagen co-founders Prof. Riesner und Dr. Schumacher and the European Investment Fund, are convinced of the great market potential and are now investing a seven-figure sum in the company. Riesner and Schumacher speak of „a convincing example of how real innovation arises from outstanding fundamental university research“.
Dr. Philipp Rittershaus, investment manager at HTGF adds: „With NUMAFERM’s unique production technology, various peptides with novel functionalities can be made commercially available. Our investment means this potential can be leveraged. “
About NUMAFERM GmbH
NUMAFERM GmbH was founded in 2017 as a spin-off of the Biochemistry Institute at the Heinrich-Heine University, Dusseldorf. The project was previously supported by an EXIST research transfer from the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy. The company offers its technology, related R&D services and a peptide catalogue focusing on pharmaceutical, antimicrobial and adhesives peptides.
Phone: +49 (0) 211 97532901
High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF) is Germany’s most active seed stage investor. With EUR 576 million under management in two funds we provide financing for technology-driven companies active in a wide range of fields, including robotics, IoT and energy, Medtech and Biotech, chemicals and software. Investors in this public-private partnership include the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy, the KfW Banking Group, and 18 strategic corporate investors.