MRO Magazine

Ajinomoto Co., Inc. Partners With Ginkgo Bioworks in Organism Design

August 26, 2015
By Business Wire News


Ginkgo Bioworks, an organism design company, today announced that it has partnered with Ajinomoto Co., a world leader in the manufacture of food and amino acid-based products. Ginkgo will leverage its automated foundry, Bioworks1, to deliver an improved strain to Ajinomoto that will provide a competitive edge in the market.

“We look forward to partnering with the world-class team at Ajinomoto Co., using Ginkgo’s foundry,” said Jason Kelly, Co-founder and CEO at Ginkgo Bioworks. “The partnership is one of the first in our expansion plans into new categories including pharmaceuticals, nutrition, cosmetics and health.”

Ginkgo Bioworks is at the intersection of industrial design and biology, delivering designer organisms built to specification for customers. The company specializes in engineering microbes to produce cultured ingredients such as flavors, fragrances, food ingredients and sweeteners. Ginkgo’s foundry, Bioworks1, employs proprietary software and robotics to streamline the engineering of organisms. The company recently announced a $45 million Series B financing round led by Viking Global.

“We looked for a partner like Ginkgo Bioworks who is doing cutting-edge work with organism design,” said Kazuya Onomichi, Corporate Vice President, General Manager, R&D Planning Dept. at Ajinomoto Co. “We are excited to work together and leverage their state-of-the-art foundry to continue our leadership in the business front.”

About Ginkgo Bioworks

Ginkgo Bioworks is an organism design company that is building organisms to specification for customers across markets including food, health and consumer goods. The company’s organism engineers work directly with customers including Fortune 500 companies to design microbes for their specific needs. Ginkgo Bioworks is based in Boston and is financially backed by Viking Global, Felicis Ventures, OS Fund and Y Combinator, as well as a number of angel investors and funds.

About Ajinomoto Co., Inc.

Ajinomoto Co. is a global manufacturer of high-quality seasonings, processed foods, beverages, amino acids, pharmaceuticals and specialty chemicals. For many decades Ajinomoto Co. has contributed to food culture and human health through wide-ranging application of amino acid technologies. Today, the company is becoming increasingly involved with solutions for improved food resources, human health and global sustainability. Founded in 1909 and now operating in 26 countries and regions, Ajinomoto Co. had net sales of JYP 1,006.6 billion (USD 9.17 billion) in fiscal 2014. For more about Ajinomoto Co. (TYO: 2802), visit

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