Merck Extends Existing Strategic Alliance with Leading Nanotechnology Company

Published on October 8, 2008 at 3:26 PM

Merck KGaA (EMD in North America) announced today the extension of its existing strategic alliance with Nano-Terra, Inc., a leading nanotechnology co-development company.

The original agreement between the companies, announced in February 2007, was to develop innovative, nanotechnology-based products and solutions based on Merck’s materials.

After successfully meeting initial development milestones, this new agreement will focus on specific application development for Merck customers and moving the technical capabilities into the marketplace for commercialization.

Under the new agreement, which extends the partnership through 2011, Nano-Terra will develop novel application techniques for existing Merck materials which are designed to address market opportunities where smaller (micron and nanometer) feature sizes are required for certain printable electronics components. The Merck fabrication processes will be based on Nano-Terra’s proprietary soft lithography technology, invented and pioneered by Professor George Whitesides of Harvard University, a co-founder of Nano-Terra, and the partners will share commercialization rights on a global basis. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

The new development work will be done at Nano-Terra's lab facilities in Cambridge, with close cooperation of a Merck scientific team and by EMD Chemicals, Merck's North American affiliate.

Dr. Thomas Geelhaar, Vice President Liquid Crystals R&D and Business Development Chemicals of Merck KGaA, said, "We were very pleased by the progress made in the initial stages of our relationship with Nano-Terra. We look forward to our continued collaboration with Professor Whitesides and his team, and to building on these developments to create specific products which we believe will provide significant benefits to our customers.”

"Through its embrace of innovative technologies and applications, Merck continues to underscore its commitment as a pioneer in research and development,” said Dr. Carmichael Roberts, Vice Chairman of Nano-Terra. "We are delighted to extend our working relationship with them and to enhance their exploration of how to best optimize materials to improve products and processes for its customers.”

In 2006, Merck bestowed on Professor Whitesides the prestigious Emanuel Merck Lectureship prize.

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