San Diego Business Journal

Local agtech company Cibus, which uses gene editing to make crops hardier, has raised $70 million in a Series C financing round.

The company said in a June 26 news release that the round was led by Fidelity Management and Research Co., a division of the Boston-based financial services company Fidelity Investments Inc. Other investors, including Alexandria Venture Investments, the venture arm of Pasadena-based Alexandria Real Estate Equities Inc., and Boston-based Cormorant Asset Management, also participated.

“Over the last year, Cibus has reached a number of important milestones with our core technologies, regulatory and commercialization execution,” Cibus CEO Peter Beetham said. “This funding is critically important for us to meet our aggressive trait development and commercialization plans.”

Beetham said the money will be used to commercialize its first commercial product, a non-GMO weed control crop called SU Canola, and to accelerate research and development into other crops, including canola, flax, rice and potato. The crops are not considered genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Cibus said the company has sold its entire inventory of SU Canola and expects to see continued strong growth in sales.

The company, which does its R&D in San Diego, also operates subsidiaries in Europe and North America.

Cibus, which was founded in 2001, has said it aims to develop sustainable crops with improved characteristics, such as resistance to disease and drought. Its technology, the company said, will be used to develop products for industries including food, flavor and fragrance and personal care.

Reach reporter Sarah de Crescenzo at