Gingko Bioworks' lab facility. Photo: Gingko Bioworks
Ginkgo Bioworks is in the business of designing and printing microbes, but it recently raised $275 million — bringing its valuation to over $1 billion — because it sees itself more akin to a software company.
Why it matters: The Boston-based company says that, by providing specialized services for designing, developing, and printing DNA, it can open possibilities for customers in industries outside of health care.
For example, a fragrance company can pay Ginkgo Bioworks for a project that would otherwise be too expensive to do in-house, according to co-founder and CEO Jason Kelly. A pharma company would have to hire scientists to do the development itself.
Deal details: Investors in the round include Viking Global, Y Combinator's Continuity Fund, Cascade Investment (Bill Gates' investment vehicle), and General Atlantic. Though Kelly declined to specify the new valuation, a Delaware filing first spotted by Recode pegs it at $1.3 billion.
Part of the proceeds will be used to open a third lab facility.