VIB acquires BASF's CropDesign site in Belgium
VIB will establish a plant science and agricultural technology incubator at the CropDesign site.
VIB, a leading life sciences institute in Flanders, has signed an agreement with BASF to acquire its CropDesign site in Nevele, Belgium. VIB and CropDesign have had a close scientific relationship for more than 15 years. CropDesign, currently part of BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division (basf.com), was established in 1998 as a VIB spinoff and has grown into a biotech company specializing in plant phenotyping technology.
VIB will establish a plant science and agricultural technology incubator at the CropDesign site. These facilities will serve as Flanders’ premier center for agricultural biotechnology (AgBio) innovations for start-ups. VIB will provide a physical space for early-stage companies that work on the future of sustainable agriculture and food production, offer greenhouse space and provide an environment for likeminded companies.
“Our vision is to establish Flanders’ first AgBio incubator as the driving force behind innovations that produce the agricultural solutions of tomorrow. This will further fuel the growth of the AgBio R&D cluster around Ghent. With the acquisition of the CropDesign site, we want to create opportunities for entrepreneurs to develop their company in Flanders, taking advantage of the unique life sciences ecosystem and bringing high value jobs to the area,” said Jérôme Van Biervliet, Managing Director at VIB.
“By divesting our CropDesign site, we enable our long-term partner VIB to further develop and apply the innovative phenotyping technology in which CropDesign is highly skilled,” said Linda Trolinder, Senior Vice President Research & Development Seeds & Traits at BASF’s Agricultural Solutions division.