A Richard Branson- and Khosla Ventures-backed biofuels and biochemicals maker, Gevo, raised $107 million, netting an estimated $95.7 million after expenses and underwriting discounts, in an initial public offering yesterday.
The company’s technology and chemical processes use yeast biocatalysts to make isobutanol from sugar. Gevo’s biofuels and biochemicals will offer an alternative to petroleum-derived butanol, and in some cases, other biofuels like ethanol.
Gevo’s isobutanol, according to the company website, could be used: as fuel that’s compatible with gas tanks, in jet biofuels for military and commercial use, blended fuels, and to manufacture industrial coatings, solvents, textiles, fibers and plastics.
In September 2010, Gevo acquired a Luverne, Minnesota ethanol production facility, and expects to begin commercial production of isobutanol there in the first half of 2012.
The company is now trading on NASDAQ as GEVO. Shares were up 11% at mid-day trading following the IPO.
Gevo brings renewable and cost-effective fossil fuel alternatives to consumers worldwide will be absolutely essential to meet increasing energy demands and save their earth from global warming. Gevo focuses on the production of isobutanol. Advanced biofuels like isobutanol can also address many challenges that first-generation biofuels such as ethanol have faced on their path to market: energy efficiency, transport and the need to modify existing engines. In contrast, isobutanol: Has a higher energy content per gallon than many first...
Khosla Ventures is a venture capital firm started in 2004 by Vinod Khosla, Co-Founder of Sun Microsystems. The firm focuses on environmentally friendly technologies in addition to the traditional venture areas such as the Internet, computing, mobile and silicon technology arenas.
Sir Richard Branson is best known for his Virgin brand of over 360 companies. His first successful business venture was at age 15, when he launched Student magazine. His next venture was a record mail-order business in 1970. Two years later, he opened a chain of record stores, Virgin Records, later known as Virgin Megastores and rebranded as zavvi in late 2007.