Dutch life science and food ingredients company DSM, increasingly investing in biotechnology, this week reported that in 2001 it has filed more patent applications in the European Union than any other company, according to the records of the European Patent Office (EPO).
"The EPO statistics confirm that biotechnology is already and will become progressively more important to DSM over the next few years," commented DSM Managing Board member Jan Zuidam. "More than twenty per cent of our current sales are already biotech-related. Our substantial research efforts in this field are bearing fruit."
DSM filed 305 patent applications with the European Patent Office in 2001, of which 154 related to biotechnology, making DSM the number one biotech patent filer andnumber 35 in the overall ranking. "The increase in the number of patent applications in 2001 mainly had to do with our genomics project," explained Emmo Meijer. As Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Mr Meijer oversees DSM's research and development activities, which are carried out by a workforce of more than two thousand people.
"The new knowledge gained from this work has led to a number of inventions, which DSM naturally wants to patent," Mr Meijer said.
Last week DSM posted a net profit of €959 million. Although DSM Fine Chemicals posted slightly lower sales and a lower operating profit, DSM Food Specialties and DSM Bakery Ingredients posted improved operating profits.