Our GENO BDO™ biobased process provides a ‘better’ way to produce 1,4-butanediol (BDO), from alternative feedstocks, with better economics and greater sustainability than BDO made using conventional feedstocks and processes. BDO, with a $4 billion dollar market worldwide, is used in everyday products including athletic apparel, running shoes, electronics and automotive applications.

The GENO BDO™ process has been commercial since late 2012 and has been steadily gaining market traction. Our process:

  • has been used to produce thousands of tons of BDO, all of which was sold and shipped;
  • has been licensed for commercial plants by both BASF (the world’s #1 chemical producer and #1 BDO producer) and Novamont, with both firms subsequently expanding their agreements;
  • and is supported by Cargill with a full range of feedstock and production support services.

The BDO produced with our process has been tested and used successfully by many leading firms, and continues to extend further into the market. That means that companies have made polymers, fibers and materials with the same properties as when they use conventional BDO, while continuing to use the same equipment and processes to make their products. Our BDO has been validated by Invista (Lycra® spandex), BASF (PolyTHF®), DSM, Lanxess, Toray, Far Eastern New Century and many more. As examples, Lanxess has used our BDO in their world-scale plants; and DSM has approved our BDO for use in their Arnitel products and published a detailed technical paper confirming our quality and usability.

Novamont is building the world’s first dedicated commercial-scale plant that uses our GENO BDO process. Originally intended to produce 40 million pounds per year (18 kTa), it is now planned to have a 66 million pound per year capacity (30 kTa). BASF, as part of an expanded license agreement, has rights to build a plant of up to 165 million pounds per year (75 kTa).

Genomatica has earned tremendous recognition for its innovative technology and its commercialization track record, and our GENO BDO process has been a key proof point. Awards that respect our accomplishments with BDO include the Kirkpatrick Award, for ‘the most noteworthy chemical engineering technology commercialized in the world,’ and the 2015 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer award.


Over 2,000 tons of BDO, filling over 100 trucks, 
was produced using Genomatica’s process.


FENC shirt
Major products are made with Genomatica’s BDO. Examples: Invista’s Lycra® spandex, BASF’s PolyTHF, and high-performance fabrics from Far Eastern New Century.