How and why is Biotech Expanding in Personal Care and Cosmetics with Increased Investment and Strategic Partnerships?

How and why is biotech expanding into Personal Care and Cosmetics with increased investment and strategic partnerships?

Biotechnology is rapidly being adopted by the personal care and cosmetics industries in order to develop innovative and effective products. Personalised beauty trends and growing consumer demand for sustainable and natural products are two of the main drivers behind this. By 2027, the biotech market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of more than 5%.  Given the potential, the personal care cosmetics industry in and around biotechnology has seen a number of alliances, investments, and acquisitions when it comes to formulations based on biopolymers.

Croda + Solus Biotech

Ceramide is rapidly gaining traction in the industry as a fantastic moisturising and hydrating agent that also has anti-aging qualities and aids in barrier repair. With improved and superior ingredients, Croda’s acquisition of Solus Biotech demonstrates the latter’s determination to capture a significant market share. Ceramides and phospholipids, which are important components in numerous end applications and are made using Solus Biotech’s unique yeast fermentation technology, make up a large portion of the portfolio.

Givaudan + Amyris

Silicones are used as emollients and moisturising agents in cosmetics, but due to their bioaccumulative nature, certain regulations have recently been introduced to the market.  The timing of Givaudan’s acquisition of Amyris’s biofermented portfolio was ideal, as the biotech company has a long list of sustainable molecules derived from fermentation. One such ingredient that makes a fantastic natural substitute for silicone in cosmetics, sun protection, and hair care products is Hemisqualane (transformed from squalene). 80% of squalene is derived from fish liver oil, but Amyris obtains squalene from sugarcane, a natural source that results in sustainable ingredients suitable for today’s consumer.

Shiseido + CHITOSE Group

As people’s preferences for natural and sustainable ingredients have grown, algae extracts have become very popular. Shiseido’s partnership with biotech company CHITOSE Group has an undivided aim at establishing a microalgae-based industry. Biodiversity, ease of cultivation, and environmental considerations all contribute to the industry’s dedicated push towards these marine-extracted products that exhibit excellent anti-aging and anti-inflammatory properties.

Evonik + Novachem

Evonik has been constantly expanding its business with acquisitions and partnerships across the value chain.  Recently, Novachem has now been integrated with Evonik, joining ALKION Biopharma, Wilshire Technologies, innoHealth, Infinitec Activos, and Botanica, among other biotech companies. The goal of these alliances and acquisitions has been to lead the biotechnology sector by obtaining the greatest technology and active ingredients available. Evonik is committed to sustainability, and their collaboration with Novachem has given them access to plant-based substitutes for a range of end-applications.

Symrise + Synergio

Developing innovative ingredients with the latest technologies will be the key to the future of personal care. In an effort to meet the evolving needs of the industry, Symrise and Synergio have made a strategic investment to gain access to Synergio’s plant bioactive synergies for the production of natural products.  Sourced sustainably, Synergio offers natural antimicrobial combinations, which can help brands like Symrise focus on launching sustainable products for the contemporary world.


These collaborations and alliances across the value chain clearly depict the segment’s overall growth. As a result of these strategic interactions between various brands, new developments are almost certain to emerge in the coming months. It is highly likely that key players (Croda, Evonik, Symrise) will leverage regional or novel ingredient players with critical biotechnology setups, potentially leading to increased market share.

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