AgPlenus, the subsidiary (100%) of
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The Israeli, which is also traded on the Nasdaq, announces the arrival of the “Lead” phase in the development of its herbicide APH1, after a second series of field tests that confirmed the product’s effectiveness has been proven effective on a wide variety of herbs. “It’s very exciting,” says Abogen CEO and chairman of Agplanos, Ofer Habib, in a conversation with BizPortal. “I am sure it has great and real value for the industry. In my opinion, we are providing a diamond here that we will continue to polish. ”
Agplanos has been working on the development of APH1 for the past two years, with the big breakthrough according to the company coming in the last year, with the positive results for those weeds that have proven resistant to other killers. In fact, the company has already received such results in tests conducted in Israel, but chose to perform additional tests in the United States with an independent third party, the California-based agricultural research and development organization SynTech Research. The results showed statistical significance of weed control (compared to the control group not treated in the product) in the range of 70-100% in six of nine weed varieties that are considered commercially important. Habib emphasizes that the company made sure to use a chemical that is safe for humans.
The company has already applied for a patent, and if accepted, they will be given an exclusivity for a period of 20 years on the development. In the meantime, the company will soon begin safety and field tests on the way to the Optimized Lead phase, which is mainly in front of the regulators. “I think it will take a year and a half to two years before we get there,” says Habib, “I would not be surprised if we start talking to large entities around the world during the year and find the right partner to pay for such a thing in exchange for royalties and do the Optimized Lead for us.”
Explain, why do we actually have to kill weeds? How do they interfere with the crop?
“Think, for example, of growing corn, soybeans or wheat. In the fields where they are grown you will not see a large evening of weeds, but only the cultivation that the farmers are interested in. This is because they spray the soil with materials before sowing so that the weeds do not grow. And fertilizer, and the last thing you want as a farmer is that weeds rob you of these resources – it can lead to a 50% reduction in yield. It’s similar to raising 30 children on a child’s budget, not working. What’s more, as long as there are no weeds and there is uniformity of only desired crops “This way, the harvest becomes more efficient.”
It is estimated that by 2022 the herbicide market will roll in about $ 34 billion. How much revenue can Agaplanos see from this development?
“The expectation of all herbicides (herbicides – AP) is to be sold for at least a billion dollars – this is what the least successful among them roll. The most famous chemical herbicide is called a round-up, and its peak sales were $ 8 billion worldwide. “This is important in the world of agriculture. There is no situation in which modern agriculture can exist without herbicides.”
What importance does it have for someone who is not a farmer?
“Home gardening also uses herbicides – not only those who grow fruits and vegetables in the garden but also if you create an access path and you want to clear it of weeds. Similarly, municipalities also spray sidewalks with herbicides, or the roadsides. This is a very large market that is irrelevant. “Only for farmers and the variety of uses is simply enormous. Wherever weeds are weighed by hand, they will want to replace it with material.”
What are the main markets you mark?
“We usually look at the United States, the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe and South America. These are areas where agriculture is very advanced. In Brazil and Argentina agriculture is like high-tech for Israel. Brazil is the soybean barn in the world, and so is the United States with wheat.”
Recently, brokerage firm Cantor Fitzgerald began surveying the stock and gave it a buy recommendation at a price of $ 9 – 115% higher than the price at which it trades with the opening of trading today on Wall Street. Kristen Kloska, an analyst at Cantor, said Abogen’s innovation is underestimated and that implementing the plans of its five subsidiaries could generate much interest in 2021, given the situation where some of them are approaching the possibility of commercialization.
“I think we are finally at the point where we are starting to see the fruits of the subsidiaries, and I think being based on them and not being dependent on big companies is a brilliant step we have taken,” Habib adds. “We will come to greatness when we have produce and then we will get what we get. We have already started the breakthrough. Apart from Agaplanus has our biomics, next year we will do experiments on humans to improve cancer treatments, Lavie Bio, which works in the field of microbes for plants – almost every company has good results this year. The latter and that should affect the way the capital market sees us. ”
“The right thing to do is to look at our turnover in the United States. When you have a little over thirty million shares and the trading volume in you is two million shares on certain days, it shows the great interest in the company.”
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