Kansas Bioscience Authority to invest more than $4.1 million in three animal health enterprises

Kansas Bioscience Authority to invest more than $4.1 million in three animal health enterprises

July 24, 2012 (OLATHE, Kan.) — The Kansas Bioscience Authority board of directors today approved $4,118,515 in new investments in two animal health companies and a Kansas State University collaborative research initiative. The investments are:

  • Bayer Health Care, a component of the Bayer Group, an international health care and chemicals group based in Germany, has its North American headquarters in Shawnee and employs more than 450 people. A $750,000 KBA grant will provide the company an incentive to retain and expand the Shawnee facility and to hire an additional 58 new people over three years at an average annual wage of $83,000.
  • Heartland Plant Innovations, or HPI, in Manhattan will receive $2.5 million to support its fiscal 2013 operations and programmatic activities. HPI is developing advanced technologies for plant gene discovery, trait validation and crop improvement in order to deliver new products and production platforms. The research team associated with the center focuses on emerging commercial opportunities for wheat and sorghum, crops in which Kansas has national leadership and expertise. The center is a public and private collaboration of Kansas Wheat (a collaboration of the Kansas Wheat Commission and the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers), K-State, the University of Kansas, and industrial partners Pioneer Hi-Bred, Monsanto, the Kashi division of Kellogg, General Mills and Caravan Ingredients.
  • The Center of Excellence for Emerging and Zoonotic Animal Diseases at K-State will receive KBA funding of $868,515 to support work to develop ways to diagnose and control Schmallenberg virus, an emerging animal disease causing considerable losses in European cattle, goat and sheep herds. While Schmallenberg virus is not yet present in the United States, its recent emergence and rapid spread make it a global animal health and economic threat. CEEZAD director Jürgen Richt, DVM, PhD, of K-State and William Wilson, PhD, of the U.S. Department of Agriculture will lead the research team, and the Biosecurity Research Institute at K-State will provide biocontainment necessary for the project.

Approved investments are subject to final agreements between the Kansas Bioscience Authority and investees, with payments made only as the recipients achieve specified milestones.

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About the KBA
The Kansas Bioscience Authority was created by the Kansas Economic Growth Act of 2004 to accelerate growth in the bioscience sector. Funded by Kansas income taxes generated by bioscience jobs, KBA investments help create high-paying jobs, fuel capital expenditures, spur outside grants, and encourage private capital investments in Kansas bioscience companies. KBA investments result in high-quality jobs today and for future generations of Kansans, and bioscience discoveries and life-saving cures that will improve lives around the world.

Contact (913) 397-8300