Starpharma and Adama announced the licensing by Adama of Starpharma's Priostar dendrimer technology for the development and commercialization of an enhanced, proprietary 2,4-D herbicide for the U.S. market. 2,4-D is one of the top three herbicides sold world-wide, with global sales in 2014 estimated by Phillips McDougall to be around $680 million. The U.S. market in 2014 was worth approximately $115 million, and has been projected by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to grow by more than 70 percent by 2020.

Adama has already commenced development of a novel and unique 2,4-D product containing the Priostar dendrimer technology, which is expected to provide better flexibility and weed control benefits to the grower, as well as improved safety. This will allow for on-target application, thus benefiting the environment by reducing the amounts of product required.

Under the license, Starpharma will receive royalties on sales of the proprietary Adama Priostar-improved 2,4-D products. In addition to the US, the agreement also includes a mechanism to expand the license into additional territories.  

Sami Shabtai, head of innovative development at Adama, commented, "As a farmer-centric company, Adama constantly strives to bring new and innovative solutions to farmers that will simplify their lives. The innovative nature and superior performance of the Priostar formulations fit well with our strategy to deliver simple and efficient solutions to farmers to help them grow. This is yet another step in the evolution and differentiation of our offering, as we continue to introduce unique mixtures and formulations to the market."

Jackie Fairley, Ph.D., CEO of Starpharma, said, "We enjoy a positive relationship with Adama, and their extensive trials of Priostar-improved 2,4-D formulations have led to this license agreement. With Adama's strong, proven record of innovative product development, we are very pleased to have them as commercial partners for Priostar-improved 2,4-D products. In addition, we continue to explore other Priostar product opportunities with Adama."

About Starpharma's Priostar dendrimer technology:

Starpharma's Priostar dendrimer technology offers formulation and efficacy benefits in crop protection applications including:

  • Improved efficacy
  • More concentrated formulations to reduce transport costs;
  • Reduction in solvent requirements; and
  • Increased adhesion, to reduce losses due to rain run-off, and the need for multiple applications.