AI genomics co NRGene files for $40m TASE IPO

The Israeli company analyzes genetic information using AI and big data to enhance plant and livestock genes.

Israeli AI genomics company NRGene has filed for an initial public offering (IPO) on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. As far as is known, the company will try to raise $40 million at a company valuation which financial consultant Entropy says is between $150 and $200 million. According to NRGene's prospectus the company, "is based on AI, which analyzes genetic information based on big data in order to streamline and enhance plant and livestock genes in the global agricultural sector using natural means (without genetic engineering).

NRGene's last financing round was in January 2017 at a company valuation of $60 million, before money.

NRGene says that its technology is "unique and breakthrough and allows the company's customers to develop at an accelerated pace plants that are more resilient to diseases and extreme climates." The company adds, "It is one of the leaders in the world in the gene enhancement industry thorugh AI and among its customers are large companies like Bridgestone, Syngenta, Bayer, and Mondelez as well as medium-sized and small companies."

NRGene was founded in 2009 by CEO Dr. Gil Ronen and VP strategic accounts Guy Kol. The IPO will be led by IBI and Epsilon underwriters.

The company currently has a 'going concern' qualification attached to its financial statement by its accountants because it does not generate enough revenue to finance operations and is dependent on external sources of funding. The prospectus also states that NRGene was hit by the Covid-19 crisis in the first half of 2020, which caused a delay in its analyses and a fall of 26% ($1 million) in its first half revenue, which was nearly $3 million. However the company did reduce its expenses and losses by 17% to $2 million. Ahead of the IPO the company has raised the salaries of its senior executives with Gil Ronen's monthly salary rising 80% to NIS 87,000 from NIS 49,000.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - - on December 28, 2020

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