Solazyme, Inc., a South San Francisco, CA-based biotechnology company producing renewable oil and bioproducts from microalgae, has added Sir Richard Branson as an investor in its Series D financing.
Sir Branson, who has invested in Solazyme’s financing in a personal capacity joins existing investors Bunge, Braemar Energy Ventures, Harris & Harris Group, Lightspeed VenturePartners, The Roda Group, and VantagePoint Venture Partners.
Sir Branson is the founder of the Virgin Group. Virgin is one of the world’s most recognised and respected brands and has expanded into sectors ranging from air and ground travel to media, telecommunications, health, leisure, space travel and renewable energy through more than 200 companies worldwide.
The group currently employs approximately 50,000 people in 29 countries.
Founded in 2003, Solazyme has developed a technology that allows algae to produce oil and biomaterials in standard fermentation facilities, at large scale. These oils and biomaterials are tailored for biofuel production and as replacements for fossil petroleum and plant oils in a diverse range of products running from clean fuels and chemicals to cosmetics and foods.
On August, 9, 2010, the company announced that it had raised $52m in its Series D financing round.