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Demetrix Raises $50 Million to Brew Cannabinoids




Demetrix Inc., a biotechnology firm focused on the production of cannabinoids announced it has secured $50 million in Series A funding to continue its pursuit of isolating and brewing cannabinoids. The money comes from previous investor Horizons Ventures and Tuatara Capital, an investment fund in the cannabis industry. Demetrix collected $11 million in seed funding earlier in the year.

There are over 100 cannabinoids in the cannabis plant with some in trace amounts and using baker’s yeast scientists want to brew large amounts of cannabinoids using fermentation technology that speeds up cannabinoid production. As more research comes out on the potential uses for some of the rarer cannabinoids, brewing cannabinoids is the fastest way to research them in greater quantitates and lower cost. Other biotech firms are also using yeast to isolate and produce cannabinoids.

“Demetrix’s mission is to help the world benefit from nature’s rarest ingredients, and we’re excited to partner with world-class investors like Tuatara Capital and Horizons Ventures to help global pharmaceutical, supplement, and consumer product companies deliver innovative products using cannabinoids,” Demetrix CEO Jeff Ubersax said. “We’ve assembled a team of industry veterans, built a scalable technology platform, and are working with global regulatory organizations to quickly commercialize.”

Demetrix says it will use the money to scale its operations and commercialize the first of the cannabinoids it believes can be used for various consumer and medical products. The company expects the global market for cannabinoids to reach $100 billion by 2029.

The Emeryville-based Demetrix was founded in 2015 by famed University of California, Berkeley Professor Jay Keasling and led by former Amyris executive Jeff Ubersax and has secured over $60 million in total funding. The company uses yeast and combined with biotechnology to produce complex and sustainable ingredients at lower cost and high purity.