Merck announced that within the scope of a capital increase by the Israeli start-up company QLight Nanotech, it is acquiring an interest in the Jerusalem-based company.
- Merck acquires interest in Israeli start-up QLight Nanotech
- Company develops quantum dot-based technology for lighting and display applications
QLight Nanotech is a spin-off subsidiary of Yissum, the technology transfer company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. QLight Nanotech develops products for use in displays and energy-efficient light sources based on semiconductor nanoparticles known as quantum dots. The transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2012. With this investment Merck will hold an equity stake in the Israel start-up company. Further financial details were not disclosed.
For more than three years, QLight Nanotech and Merck have been carrying out joint research into this new class of materials as part of a partnership program sponsored by the Israeli Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor. Merck’s investment will help the company to accelerate the development of quantum dot-based technology for new applications. Upon the achievement of R&D milestones, Merck could further increase its stake in Qlight Nanotech, as well as develop and commercialize the new products in its Performance Materials division.
“I am excited that our basic science discoveries on semiconductor nanocrystals are now being realized in innovative technological applications. The partnership with Merck, a world leader in materials for display applications, is a synergistic one allowing us at Qlight Nanotech to implement advanced chemicals manufacturing and applications’ know-how,” said the scientific founder of QLight Nanotech, Professor Uri Banin of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, who will continue to support the company as a shareholder and advisor alongside of Yissum.
Kobi Olin, Chief Executive Officer of Qlight Nanotech, added: “This is a major development for Qlight Nanotech to position us on the runway for becoming a leader in the emerging semiconductor nanoparticle materials and applications field. The Merck partnership is a strategic connection that will enable QLight Nanotech to achieve accelerated technology development and growth in collaboration with major international customers.”
Volker Hilarius, Director Scouting and Alliances for Merck’s Technology Office Chemicals, added: “Our Investment into QLight Nanotech reflects our belief in the promise of the new technology based on quantum dot materials, particularly for the next generation of displays. We are excited to gain access to this technology and work with Qlight Nanotech as an entrepreneurial organization that is flexible, fast and innovative.”
The cooperation is a result of Merck’s participation in the Global Enterprise Collaboration Framework Program of the Israeli Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor. This program was set up to grant Israeli partner companies dedicated technical, marketing and sales support in worldwide market places as well as access to business development and application technology resources through a cooperation with global players in industry.