BASF Venture Capital and Orbia Ventures Invest in Israeli Biotech Company FortePhest | Your money


LUDWIGSHAFEN, Germany & NESS ZIONA, Israel & BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–February 10, 2022–

BASF Venture Capital GmbH (BVC) and Orbia Ventures today announce their Series B investment in Israeli biotech startup FortePhest. Founded in 2017, FortePhest develops new technology to control herbicide resistant weeds and invasive plants. Inspired and informed by natural plant processes, the company supports global crop protection by implementing this technology. BASF Venture Capital and Orbia Ventures are joined by Sherpa InnoVentures, SIBF II and other investors for this funding round. The backers have agreed not to disclose financial details of the investment.

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BASF Venture Capital GmbH (BVC) and Orbia Ventures invest in Israeli biotech startup FortePhest. Founded in 2017, FortePhest develops new technology to control herbicide resistant weeds and invasive plants. FortePhest has pioneered the development of several classes of herbicides with a new mode of action to inhibit weed growth, without harming important crops like corn. (Photo: BusinessWire)

The new technology aims to solve one of the biggest challenges facing crop protection today. As more than 250 weeds and invasive plant species are resistant to more than 150 herbicides currently in use, innovative solutions are needed to meet the subsistence needs of a growing global population. By 2050, the world’s population will increase by around 2 billion to around 10 billion people, while the land usable for agriculture per person is expected to be reduced significantly and the use of pesticides will also be reduced as that more countries adopt and implement sustainability policies. New phytosanitary products to improve crop yields while meeting sustainability requirements are therefore an essential area of ​​research.

FortePhest has pioneered the development of several classes of herbicides with a new mode of action to inhibit weed growth, without harming corn, wheat and other important crops. FortePhest develops proprietary herbicides (H-Forte) that disrupt free amino acid homeostasis in plant cells and selectively target weed meristems, halting shoot and root development.

Says Alex Kozak, co-founder and CEO of FortePhest, “I am delighted that FortePhest is backed by such a strong team of investors. The capital will allow FortePhest to accelerate its development programs and work with potential global strategic partners to bring to market new crop protection products that meet future regulatory requirements.

“With its breakthrough technology, FortePhest has created another important step towards more sustainable agriculture,” says Markus Solibieda, Managing Director of BASF Venture Capital GmbH. Solibieda continues: “With our investment in FortePhest, we support BASF’s strategy to promote innovative technologies that help produce affordable and sustainable food.

“In a context of growing weed resistance to herbicides, the industry has been intensely searching for new mechanisms of action for many years. FortePhest has now succeeded in developing novel, highly selective herbicides based on a newly discovered mode of action, revolutionizing the industry,” said Shai Albaranes, Vice President of Innovation and Enterprise at Orbia. “What Alex and his team have developed over the past few years will have a huge positive impact on the environment by reducing the amounts of chemicals applied to fields and therefore reducing negative impacts at source. These are the qualities that Orbia and Orbia Ventures look for in an investment.

About BASF Venture Capital

At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF Venture Capital GmbH (BVC) also contributes to this corporate purpose. Founded in 2001, BVC has offices in Europe, the United States, China, India, Brazil and Israel. BVC’s objective is to generate new growth potential for BASF’s current and future business areas by investing in young companies and funds. Investments focus on new materials, AgTech, digitalization and new disruptive business models.

More information at

About BASF

At BASF, we create chemistry for a sustainable future. We combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. More than 110,000 employees of the BASF Group contribute to the success of our customers in almost every industry and almost every country in the world. Our portfolio is organized into six segments: Chemicals, Materials, Industrial Solutions, Surface Technologies, Nutrition & Care, and Agricultural Solutions. BASF had sales of 59 billion euros in 2020. BASF shares are traded on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (BAS) and as American Depositary Receipts (BASFY) in the United States. More information at

About Forte Phest

Founded in 2017, FortePhest is a biotechnology company focused on crop protection. The Company develops innovative products to control both regular weeds and herbicide resistant weeds. This is done by exploring new mechanisms of action (MOAs) discovered in plants. Inspired by natural plant protectors, our technology aims to provide powerful, environmentally friendly and sustainable solutions to improve crop productivity. For more information, visit

About Orbia

Orbia is a community of businesses bound together by a common goal: to advance life around the world. Orbia companies have the collective goal of ensuring food security, connecting communities to data infrastructure, reducing water scarcity, reimagining the future of cities and homes, and expanding access. to health and wellness with basic and advanced materials and solutions. Orbia operates in the sectors of precision agriculture, data communications, building and infrastructure, fluorinated solutions and polymer solutions. The company has commercial activities in more than 110 countries and operations in more than 50, with global headquarters in Mexico City, Boston, Amsterdam and Tel Aviv. To learn more, visit

About Orbia Ventures

Orbia Ventures is the venture capital investment arm of Orbia and supports a collaborative, human-centered approach to creating a better future in food security, water management, resilient infrastructure , data access, health advancement, sustainable energy and decarbonization. By partnering with startups who share our vision and are committed to developing cutting-edge innovation and smart technology, we can tackle the world’s biggest challenges and help communities prepare for the future. To learn more, please visit Orbia Ventures | Orbie.

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CONTACT: BASF Venture Capital GmbH

Christian Muller

Telephone: +49 152 54913724

[email protected] Ltd.

Alex Kozak

Phone: +972-544300793

[email protected] Ventures

Kacy Karlen

Telephone: + 1 865-410-3001

[email protected]



SOURCE: Orbia Ventures and BASF Venture Capital GmbH

Copyright BusinessWire 2022.

PUBLISHED: 02/10/2022 08:00 AM/DISC: 02/10/2022 08:02 AM

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