A Purdue Research Park-based bio-chemical company has landed a $150,000 National Science Foundation grant. The funding will help Spero Energy Inc. with commercialization efforts. July 24, 2014

News Release

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A Purdue Research Park-based company whose one-step, patent-pending technology could improve the efficiency of alternative fuels and the production of fragrance products has received funding from the National Science Foundation.

Spero Energy Inc. has received a six-month SBIR Phase I grant from the NSF worth $150,000. Its technology is based on Purdue University intellectual property.

Basudeb Saha, chief technology officer, said the grant will help Spero Energy commercialize its lignin conversion technology.

“We will use the funding to develop process conditions for the lignin-derived products. The quality of these products will be tested for use in fragrances,” he said. “The award also will help us evaluate the stability of our catalysts, optimize critical reaction parameters to accelerate the scaling up of the technology, and develop a commercialization plan by assisting with market research.”

Saha credited the NSF and its mission to promote the progress of science.

“Besides funding basic research in all areas of fundamental science and engineering, the National Science Foundation provides R&D funds to small businesses to develop high-risk, high-potential technologies that have significant commercial and societal impact,” he said. “We're humbled by the SBIR Phase I grant that we received, as it recognizes the technical and commercial merit of our work, as established through rigorous criteria and review processes from the NSF.”

About Spero Energy Inc.

Spero Energy Inc. is an Indiana-based technology company with the mission of developing cost competitive conversion of non-food biomass feedstock to high value chemicals (HVCs) and renewable fuels. Spero Energy is developing processes for a range of renewable specialty chemicals targeting flavor and fragrance ingredients, high-performance materials and pharmaceutical markets. For more information, visit http://www.speroenergy.com.

About Purdue Research Park

The Purdue Research Park is the largest university-affiliated business incubation complex in the country. The Purdue Research Park manages the Purdue Technology Centers in four sites in Indiana located in West Lafayette, Indianapolis, Merrillville and New Albany. The more than 260 companies located in the park network employ about 4,500 people who earn an average annual wage of $63,000. The park is managed by the Purdue Research Foundation, which received the 2014 Incubator Network of the Year by the National Business Incubation Association for its work in entrepreneurship. For more information about funding and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry@prf.org

Source: Purdue Research Park

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