Apr 22, 2021

The biofacturing revolution goes public

By Josh Hoffman

With our public offering, Zymergen aims to catalyze a vibrant, sustainable future through biology.

The three founders of Zymergen at its IPO

Zymergen is taking the exciting step of becoming a public company. It’s a huge milestone for our company, coming at a time when the world needs real technological innovation more than ever.

Consumers, regulators, and customers are all demanding solutions to the sustainability challenge. We must find manufacturing technologies that don’t accelerate global warming. We must find ways to create products that don’t clog our waterways or poison our oceans. How we make things today is simply not sustainable.

Eight years ago, Zach, Jed, and I asked ourselves: How can we apply the technology of the Digital Age to leverage the diversity and precision of biology? Those conversations inspired what we now call biofacturing: using life as inspiration and cells as factories.

From science fiction to science fact

Eight years later, what were once just ideas are now working systems. Where once we had only hypotheses, now we have proof points and a pipeline of products. We have built, proven, and continue to improve our platform. We are bringing new products to market incredibly fast. We have a solid and growing pipeline of customers and new products on the way.

Becoming a public company can provide the resources to continue building our company. This will enable us to move even faster and be a catalyst for an industrial revolution that creates a vibrant, sustainable future through biology. That is what drives us to build a first-in-category biofacturing company, an organization that aspires to become a massive, global, impactful business with decades of breakthrough products to come.

Becoming a public company also coincides with our maturity as a commercial company. Over the last year, as our technology, products, and customers have grown, we have become increasingly focused on bringing customers the best products we can. Public or not, we are focused on achieving the commercial goals we set for ourselves and delivering revolutionary products. This is how we will create value on a global scale.

Some things change, some stay the same

There are many operational changes associated with becoming public. But one thing that won’t change is our mission and vision. Our mission and vision have been largely the same since our founding. We launched the company in 2013 with the belief that we could unlock biology to make better products a better way. These are core beliefs that inform everything we do.

In fact, we are doubling down on this ethos by entering the public markets as a Public Benefit Corporation (PBC). A PBC is like any other for-profit corporation, and it gives us the ability to balance the pursuit of profits and public benefit goals as well. We believe this is very much aligned to our mission, our vision, and the principles upon which we founded Zymergen.

Our mission to make a better world with biology is an important reason why many people come to work at Zymergen, and every member of the Zymergen community has an important role to play. To make our impact felt decades from now, we must continue our day-to-day work of developing our organization and building upon our technical accomplishments. Our collective commitment to excellence makes possible our success now and in the future.

What comes next

Eight years ago, we set out to make better products for a better world. Today, that’s exactly what we’re doing.

Today is about more than Zymergen’s public offering — it’s Earth Day, and it’s about the planet. The shift to sustainable product manufacturing requires a global shift in how we think, make, and use. It will take the efforts of all of us, working in harmony with nature and humbled by our task, to build the kind of future we want to see.

We are so excited about what that future holds for all of us, together. May we look back on this as an extraordinary moment not just for Zymergen, but also for how the world makes tomorrow. Thank you for celebrating with us today.

Learn more about biofacturing, our leadership team, and the Zymergen story.