‘Biofacturing’ Firm Zymergen Rises 21% in Trading Debut

Zymergen Inc., which uses biological processes to manufacture chemicals, climbed 21% in its trading debut after expanding its initial public offering to raise $500 million.

The shares closed Thursday at $37.65 in New York trading, giving the company a market value of about $3.7 billion. Including employee stock options, that valuation rises to more than $3.9 billion.

Zymergen sold 16.13 million shares Wednesday for $31 each after marketing 13.6 million for $28 to $31.

Emeryville, California-based Zymergen, which calls itself a “biofacturing” company, uses microorganisms to create the biomolecules that are key ingredients in the products it’s developing, according to its filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

In December, Zymergen launched its first product, an optical film designed for display touch sensors in personal electronic devices and other applications, according to its filings. The company said it has 10 other products in development, including a film for flexible electronic screens, an insect repellent and a fertilizer.

The company had a 2020 net loss of $262 million on revenue of $13 million, most of it from research and development service agreements.

The offering was led by JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. The shares are trading on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol under the symbol ZY.

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