Monday, January 28 10:13:41
Galway based green biotechnology company Algae Health is to create 23 new jobs following an E1m funding round.
The equity investment comes from AIB Seed Capital Fund, co-managed by Enterprise Equity Venture Capital, and the Western Investment Fund managed by the Western Development Commission with support from the state agency Udaras Na Gaeltachta.
The funding injection will enable Algae Health to commercialise the business and create five new high value biotechnology jobs in the Galway region over the next 12 months. This will increase to 23 new positions within three years.
Algae Health (Slainte Alga Teoranta) specialise in the cultivation of microalgae for the extraction of health and nutritional compounds. Microalgae are one of longest existing living organisms on earth. It is also the source of many of nature's nutritional and health compounds, which is subsequently passed onto humans in the food chain.
The company's initial product is called Astaxanthin. This product is found in wild fish and creates the pink colour which is found in fish meat. Its high anti-oxidant capacity cleans and revitalises cells within the body and is very important for brain and eye health, reducing the effects of aging, as well as physical endurance. Astaxanthin is known as the 'King of Carotenoids' as it has an anti-oxidant effect of 550 times that of Vitamin E. However, with very few people eating wild fish, this very important health substance is missing from most consumers' diets, as most farmed fish are fed a synthetic dye which does not have the same health benefits. Astaxanthin, as a product, aims to fill this market need in the global fish industry.
Edward McHugh, Managing Director, Algae Health, said: "Algae Health is thrilled to achieve the required level of funding to commercialise the business especially in the current economic conditions. This funding will commercialise our technology and bring us to a self-sustaining position. We already have a strong customer pipeline and are really looking forward to years ahead. I would very much like to thank Enterprise Equity, WDC and Udaras na Gaeltachta for supporting our company."