Merck KGaA recently announced an alliance with Nano Terra LLC, a leading nanotechnology co-development company, designed to bring to market innovative, nanotechnology-based products and solutions.
Under the agreement, Nano Terra will develop solutions with Merck to create new physical properties in specialty chemicals, currently manufactured and sold by Merck. These new properties are made possible through nano-scale, molecular fabrication methods pioneered by Nano Terra and its Co-Founder, Professor George M. Whitesides of Harvard University. The new solutions will allow Merck’s proprietary materials to be used with significantly greater precision and control, and allow for new applications at reduced economic levels never before possible.
The development work will be done primarily at Nano Terra’s lab facilities in Cambridge, with close cooperation of a Merck scientific team. Local support for the alliance will be provided by EMD Chemicals, Merck’s North American affiliate.
The two companies anticipate that first new solutions will be presented to Merck customers by early 2008. The partners will share commercialization rights on a global basis. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
“Merck is a world leader in research-driven pharmaceutical and chemical products, and the goal of this alliance is to work with them to develop innovative nanotechnology solutions that dramatically expand the addressable markets for their materials,” said Carmichael Roberts, Vice Chairman of Nano Terra. “We are very proud to have been selected by them because of our scientific capabilities.”
Dr. Thomas Geelhaar, Vice President Liquid Crystals R&D and Business Development Chemicals of Merck KGaA, added: “We have long been fascinated by the sciences originally developed by Professor George Whitesides of Harvard and, through his association with Nano Terra, we look forward to being amongst the first to commercialize these innovations with them.” In 2006, Merck bestowed on Professor Whitesides the prestigious Emanuel Merck Lectureship prize.