The recent sale of Haplotech Inc. to Farmer’s Business Network Inc. (FBN) highlights the growing demand for increased competition and choice in the canola seed market, and puts a spotlight on the innovative agricultural research taking place in Winnipeg, MB.
The acquisition creates more space for innovation and direct collaboration for small breeders, and opens new channels for market access in an ag sector that has been otherwise dominated by few players.
According to FBN, its purchase of Haplotech will “help bring increased competition to the seed industry” and create opportunities “for unprecedented collaboration with other seed developers that need elite germplasm to enhance their own programs, and supporting independent developers with promising traits that have had, until now, no clear path to market.”
Based out of Winnipeg, MB, Haplotech Inc. provides technical and consulting services in the area of plant breeding. Dr. Rale Gjuric, an accomplished breeder with extensive experience in private biotechnology industry and academia, founded Haplotech Inc. in 2009.
Dr. Gjuric has global connections and the ability to work with breeders around the world in several crop types. The company currently employs just over a dozen people at the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods & Nutraceuticals at Winnipeg. The entire Haplotech team will become FBN employees. In addition to its Winnipeg headquarters, Haplotech also has field capacity in Western Canada and in Chile. Gjuric will continue to lead FBN Canada’s Seed R&D team.
FBN acquired Haplotech in efforts to bring forward new canola genetics in the coming years to develop more affordable seed varieties. The company also hopes to make significant improvements to the canola breeding and seed market to improve choice, increase competition and improve farmers’ ROI in Western Canada and the U.S.
MLT Aikins acted as counsel to Haplotech in this transaction.