Israeli Tech Company NRGene plans to open an office in the Cortex innovation district that will serve as its U.S. base of operations.
The analytics company develops computational tools and algorithmic models for trait discovery used by seed companies, animal breeders, and academia.
Its office, which will open this spring at the CIC@CET in the Central West End, will initially have one employee and ultimately grow to about six employees, said Paul Chomet, NRGene’s strategic consultant.
“It makes a lot of sense to be in the heartland of the country with companies such as Monsanto and academic groups like the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center,” Chomet said. “St. Louis is really a cultural hub for this advanced ag genomics work.”
NRGene is the fourth Israeli agritech business that has set up operations locally in the past 18 months. All four were recruited by GlobalSTL, an initiative of BioSTL to attract high growth international companies to St. Louis. The other tree companies are Kaiima Agro-Biotech, Evogene and Forrest Innovations.
The nonprofit BioSTL focuses on nurturing St. Louis biotechnology startups. GlobalSTL was formed in May 2014 to identify and attract more mature international companies that are looking to establish a U.S. presence.
“The idea is that these companies, if they establish their U.S. base in St. Louis, as they continue to have success and grow, our hope is that growth is in St. Louis,” said BioSTL’s president and CEO Donn Rubin. NRGene has been offered $118,644 in state incentives through the Missouri Works program if it meets job creation goals. “Missouri is a world renowned hub of bioscience innovation and … today’s announcement builds on this strong economic momentum,” Gov. Jay Nixon said in a statement.