DSM Venturing backs mulberry leaf ingredient in €10m funding round
The investment builds on a distribution and collaboration agreement signed between the firms back in March 2019 that harnessed DSM's expertise in the development of the ingredient marketed as Reducose.
The investment arm of the Dutch multinational joins a list of current shareholders that include Unicorn Asset Management and sees Dr Rob Beudeker, DSM Venturing’s investment director, joining Phynova’s Board.
“We have had a formal collaboration agreement with DSM since 2018 and now they wish to invest as the company progresses Reducose to commercial Success,” says Robert Miller, chief executive of Phynova.
“DSM is a high-calibre cornerstone investor and it being represented on Phynova’s Board is testament to Phynova’s developing position with its unique, proprietary plant-derived products.”
The ingredient at the core of this funding is Reducose, a patent-protected ingredient that can be added to foods and drinks during the manufacturing stage or taken as a food supplement.
Reductose is derived from white mulberry leaves (Morus Alba) and is said to reduce the impact of high-glycaemic sugars and other carbohydrates on the body by reducing their absorption by up to 40%.
Essentially turning these fast sugars and other carbohydrates into slow ones could halt the onset of diabetes and pre-diabetes, which is estimated to affect 1 billion adults globally.
Reductose has also been the subject of a number of studies in which the ingredient has also been shown to lower the amount of insulin produced as well as decrease the Glycaemic Index (GI) of common carbohydrates.
“Making Reducose available through foods as an ingredient and as a supplement could revolutionise the management of excessive blood-glucose levels for those affected by it,” adds Dr Janita Good, co-head of life sciences, at Fieldfisher, the law firm that guided Phynova through the deal.
“This project is a particularly complex strategic investment involving multiple shareholders, but after months of dedication by all those involved, I’m pleased to see DSM and Phynova in partnership.”