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Cambridge SynBio Startup Colorifix Wins Rainbow Seed Fund “Breaking New Ground” Award at Bio-start Competition

last modified Jul 30, 2017 09:29 PM
Cambridge-based start-up Colorifix entered the Bio-start competition for companies using engineering biology to solve significant global problems and won the “Breaking New Ground” Award for its technology manufacturing vibrant and long lasting fabric dyes entirely using biological processes to help the textile industry dramatically and cost-effectively reduce its environmental impact.

Colorifix was co-founded by SynBio SRI member  Dr Orr Yarkoni and Co-Chair Dr Jim Ajioka of the Department of Pathology. The company uses synthetic biology to improve the sustainability of textile dyeing and treatment, an industry that The World Bank has estimated contributes approximately 17-20% of the Earth’s total industrial water pollution.

Oliver Sexton, Investment Director at Rainbow Seed Fund, commented “Colorifix won the prize because its technology is truly disruptive. With its a ground-breaking dyes that work across a vast range of fabrics, Colorifix has the ability to change one of the most polluting industries into one of the most sustainable. For the first time, mass-market consumers can enjoy organic fabrics vibrantly dyed using entirely environmentally sound processes. In doing so it is also truly scalable. Rainbow  wishes Colorifix the best of success.”

Colorifix
Dr Orr Yarkoni and Dr Jim Ajioka of Colorifix receiving their Award

Colorifix dyes are biologically produced using engineered bacteria in a process that uses at least three-fold less water than the industry standard and the company plan to use the prize money for certification.  Dr Orr Yarkoni, Colorifix CEO, comments “This will validate the technology against existing standards and open the tap on our revenue stream. We are getting ready to put our products out there and we are excited to showcase the power of engineered biology to address global challenges.”

Colorifix was selected for Rainbow’s “Breaking New Ground” award from amongst participants in Bio-start, sponsored by Rainbow Seed Fund and SynbiCITE, is an annual competition designed to commercialise the engineering of biology, including a 10-week accelerator programme aiming to help start-ups forge ahead in commercialising their technology. The judging was chaired by Sir Richard Sykes, former Chairman of GlaxoSmithKline.

See the original announcement here >>

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The Synthetic Biology Strategic Research Initiative provides a hub for anyone interested in Synthetic Biology at the University of Cambridge, including researchers, commercial partners and external collaborators. 

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