Japan’s Spiber Inc., a biotech startup that produces lab-grown proteins such as spider silk for use in clothing and other consumer products, has announced it will expand production of its plant-based polymers to Clinton, its first U.S. facility, through a partnership with ADM.
The expansion stems from a relationship between Spiber and Iowa that started with the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) years ago and solidified during Gov. Kim Reynolds’ trade mission to Japan last year, a new release says.
In Clinton, Spiber America LLC, a subsidiary of Spiber Inc., will combine its technology with ADM’s infrastructure and expertise. The two companies have partnered to modify and expand equipment at ADM’s biorefinery in Clinton.
An economic development incentive package approved by the IEDA Board helped ensure the Clinton location would become the first U.S. facility to produce Spiber’s protein polymers.
The incentive package includes direct assistance in the amount of $1 million through the state’s High Quality Jobs (HQJ) Program, and the City of Clinton plans to provide a 20% match.
The project represents a $101.4 million capital investment.
“Iowa has a deep understanding of the positive impact potential of projects like ours and has created an environment that is conducive to success,” said Daniel Meyer, president of Spiber America. “This award will enable Spiber to accelerate its investment in the equipment and infrastructure used to convert corn-based dextrose into alternative proteins for use as next-generation biomaterials across many industries. We are thrilled to bring our production to Clinton.”
“We are extremely excited for an amazing biotech firm like Spiber America LLC to have selected Clinton, Iowa for their first American facility. The City of Clinton welcomes Daniel Meyer and his team to our community, and we look forward to a strong partnership and much success for Spiber both in the U.S . and globally,” said Scott Maddasion, Clinton mayor.
“Clinton, IA is a prime location for biotech companies. Surrounded by corn and soybeans, we respect our local farmers for growing high-quality feedstock that is attracting high-tech companies like Spiber America LLC,” added Erin M. Cole, president and CEO of the Clinton Regional Development Corporation.
Clinton is home to dozens of manufacturing companies, including ADM, LyondellBasell, Custom-Pak, Nestle Purina PetCare Company, Sethness Roquette and many others.