ChromaDex to expand reference standards range

By Lorraine Heller

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Mergers and acquisitions

ChromaDex, which develops analytical standards for nutraceutical
ingredients, is gearing up for a major expansion, funded in large
part by a reverse merger announced yesterday.

The company has essentially merged into a publically traded 'shell' - or 'virtual' - firm, as a "cost-effective"​ way of achieving public ownership. ChromaDex CEO Frank Jaksch said the move was designed to provide access to resources needed as it continues to grow in light of a heightened focus on quality control in the US nutraceuticals market. "These resources will allow us to invest in more equipment, more people and larger facilities, and also increase our research program to expand our services,"​ he told today. The firm's major focus in the development of reference standards for botanicals, supplement ingredients and functional food ingredients. It currently has standards for over 3000 products, said Jaksch. ChromaDex expects the reverse merger will allow it to expand its reference base "pretty dramatically"​ over the next three to six months. "We're looking to grow our product base and service base five- to ten-fold over the next five years,"​ Jaksch said. This is expected to soak up "tens of millions of dollars",​ and means "we will need to access some sort of financial support beyond our cash flow".Reference standards ​ Some of the reference standards currently provided by ChromaDex include: a P57 standard for the appetite suppressant ingredient hoodia; a punicalagins standard for pomegranate; and a range of standards for the sweetener compound stevia. In the first phase of its intended expansion, ChromaDex will focus on developing standards for a variety of products that have generated repeated inquiries from customers, said Jaksch. These include a range of chlorogenic acid standards for green coffee extract, which has been promoted particularly in the weight loss arena. There are many different chlorogenic acids in green coffee extract, but standards are currently available for only a few of these, he explained. ChromaDex expects to work on expanding the range. In addition, the firm will take a closer look at berry ingredients, with a view of expanding its range of standards for the increasingly well-known 'superfruits'. These include blueberry, blackcurrant, bilberry, açai, and mangosteen, amongst others. Reverse merger ​According to Jaksch, a reverse merger is a "more efficient, cost-effective was for a small company like us to go into a publically traded company".​ ChromaDex essentially merged into the 'shell' firm Cody Resources, whose shares are publically traded but which is not an operating business. The new entity took on the name of ChromaDex. Therefore, on the outside there is little change to be seen, with the firm retaining the same name and same operations. However, Jaksch said customers will start to feel the immediate impact of an investment in people and equipement, which translates into an increased response time, followed by an expanded product range.

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