Gevo Awarded Patent Covering Low-Cost Technology That Removes Isobutanol from Fermentation Broth
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. - October 9, 2012 - Gevo, Inc. (NASDAQ: GEVO), announced today that the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has awarded the company U.S. Patent No. 8,283,505, which protects Gevo's Integrated Fermentation Technology® (GIFT®).
"This patented technology includes a proprietary separation unit that is designed to elegantly enable cost-efficient separation of isobutanol from other components of the fermentation broth," said Brett Lund, Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Gevo.
The technology covered by the '505 Patent "provides Gevo and its partners with a significant competitive advantage, as it protects the most cost-efficient separation technology available. The GIFT® system permits the continuous removal of isobutanol as it is formed in the fermentation broth. This increases productivity of the genetically modified yeast cells because yeast does not thrive in high concentrations of isobutanol," said Lund. The technology also increases final isobutanol concentrations extracted from the fermentation broth, he added.
The USPTO granted the '505 Patent in view of art cited against Gevo's earlier-issued U.S. Patent No. 8,101,808 in a reexamination request filed by Butamax Advanced Biofuels, LLC. "This means that the USPTO has determined that the '505 Patent is novel and inventive over the publications referenced in reexamination of the '808 Patent," Lund said.
"Given the thorough examination conducted by the USPTO, we believe the patent is quite strong and capable of withstanding challenges by competitors who are attempting to produce isobutanol with inferior technologies," said Lund. "We believe these competitors will have great difficulty in producing isobutanol at competitive costs without licensing this technology from Gevo."
Gevo is a leading renewable chemicals and next-generation biofuels company. Gevo's patent-protected, capital-light business model converts existing ethanol plants into biorefineries to make isobutanol. This versatile chemical can be directly integrated into existing chemical and fuel products to deliver environmental and economic benefits. Gevo is now producing isobutanol at its first commercial facility in Luverne, Minn., and has a marquee list of partners including Coca-Cola, Sasol, and LANXESS, among others. Gevo is committed to a sustainable biobased economy that meets society's needs for plentiful food and clean air and water. For more information, visit www.gevo.com.
Certain statements in this press release may constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include statements that are not purely statements of historical fact, and can sometimes be identified by our use of terms such as "intend," "expect," "plan," "estimate," "future," "strive" and similar words. These forward-looking statements are made on the basis of the current beliefs, expectations and assumptions of the management of Gevo and are subject to significant risks and uncertainty. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on any such forward-looking statements. All such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date they are made, and the company undertakes no obligation to update or revise these statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Although the company believes that the expectations reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, these statements involve many risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from what may be expressed or implied in these forward-looking statements. For a further discussion of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to the business of Gevo in general, see the risk disclosures in the Annual Report on Form 10-K of Gevo for the year ended December 31, 2011, as amended, and in subsequent reports on Forms 10-Q and 8-K and other filings made with the SEC by Gevo.
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