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Is Chromocell the Coca-Cola Favorite?

By February 15, 2011

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 Unlike Redpoint Bio, which is currently very small (employing only 11 people) and appears to be struggling, Chromocell Corporation appears to have it all together. The privately-owned company has a Nobel Prize winner on its advisory board, talented highly educated staff, and a potentially lucrative agreement with Coca-Cola. Look a little closer though, and you realize that, although this little biotech firm is looking good, it may only be because they are the new Coca-Cola favorite in the natural sweeteners race.

The agreement was announced on December 10, 2010, four months after Coca-Cola broke from their last partner, Senomyx Inc., which apparently broke ties with Coke to work with the competition at Pepsi. Prior to that, in 2007, Coke had an agreement with the ill-fated Redpoint Bio. To be honest, I didn't know there were so many small biotech companies out there working on natural non-sugar-alternatives to food sweetening, and it makes me wonder how many more Coca-Cola will try on for size before they find the perfect match.

Klayman, B. Coke in sweetener deal with Chromocell. Reuters, Dec. 10, 2010.

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February 16, 2011 at 10:48 am
(1) Kerry Kirschner says:

I think that Coke management was asleep at the switch when they let their agreement with Senomyx lapse after 8 years. Coke did not break the agreement, they lost the contract. Pepsi paid $30million up front just for the rights to be partners , taking over from Coke, in addition to suppport payments for research, plus royalties to replace Coke as the exclusive user of HFCS enhancers that will reduce sugars in non-alchoholic beverages. I think that this latest collaboration has more to do with saving face with the investment community than it portends any advancement of Cokes reducing sugar in their products. If you are watching this race to market , I do not think that there is any question that the PEP-SNMX agreement puts PEP ahead of KO. Just my opinion.

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