Business Briefs

By Staff | October 08, 2012

LS9 announces new hire, board appointment
Jon Foster has joined LS9 Inc. as the company’s chief financial officer. In his new position, Foster is responsible for management of LS9’s financial and related functions. He has worked in leadership roles in Silicon Valley companies for 14 years, previously serving as CFO and executive vice president of corporate development at Atempo Inc. Foster has also served as a deputy director in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. LS9 also recently appointed Tjerk de Ruiter to its board of directors, which elected him as its chairman. He spent 12 years at Dansico, with the last five serving as CEO of its Genencor division.

FirmGreen CEO attends White House meeting
FirmGreen Inc. CEO Steve Wilburn, along with 12 other business leaders, met with Fred Hochberg, chairman of the U.S. Export-Import Bank , and several senior administration officials at a White House Business Council meeting in August. The focus of the meeting was to discuss ways the government can assist the private sector to create jobs and help stimulate the economy through the export of U.S. manufactured products. FirmGreen is doing just that via a biogas project it is completing in Brazil. The company is exporting its green technology and startup services to develop the Gás Verde biogas processing facility at the former Jardim Gruamacho landfill.

Japanese company invests in U.S. biopower
Tokoyo-based IHI Inc., a subsidiary of IHI Corp., has acquired shares in five biomass-based power facilities from Chicago-based Exelon Corp. All five facilities are located in California and have been designated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission as qualified renewable energy generation plants. Each facility also has a power purchase agreement in place with investor-owned utilities. IHI will gain 70 MW of generating capacity through the transaction. According to IHI, it acquired a 50 percent stake in four plants; two in Bakersfield, one in Lincoln, and one in Frenso. The company also acquired a 45 percent stake in a plant in Jamestown.

Codexis appoints new executive officer
Codexis Inc. has added David O’Toole as senior vice president and chief financial officer. According to Codexis, O’Toole will bring a wealth of financial experience in the life sciences sector to his new position. O’Toole most recently served as vice president and chief financial officer of Response Genetics Inc., where he managed the finance and accounting department and was responsible for investor relations and information technologies. During his time there, O’Toole implemented policies and procedures that resulted in significant cost savings and operational efficiencies. He also successfully completed a number of equity financings.

Hawaiian algae producer recognized by the EPA
U.S. EPA Regional Administrator Jared Blumenfeld recognized Hawaii-based Kuehnle AgroSystems Inc. in August for its innovative work in algae production for use in biofuels as part of the Pacific Southwest region’s environmental awards program. The company has built a system to continuously produce algae for biofuel that pipes carbon dioxide and waste water from an oil refinery into tanks that accelerate algae growth. Kuehnle AgroSystems demonstrated its technology at Chevron’s Hawaii oil refinery in 2011 and has done significant work with the U.S. military to grow algae for biofuels.