MISSISSAUGA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec. 14, 2016) - Bee Vectoring Technologies (the "Company" or "BVT") (TSX VENTURE:BEE) is pleased to provide a shareholder update from the CEO offering an overview of the Company's strategic direction and progress towards commercialization.
- 11 patents on BVT technologies approved;
- Successful trials in strawberries, blueberries, indoor tomatoes and sunflowers with future trials in progress;
- Regulatory submissions in the process of being reviewed, results expected in 6-18 months
"We have achieved the milestones outlined at the beginning of the year in 2016 and are extremely bullish on 2017," offered Ashish Malik, President and CEO of Bee Vectoring Technologies. "Within the three months since joining Bee Vectoring Technologies, much has been accomplished that sets out a clear and concise path to commercialization including the approval of additional patents, now totaling 11 globally, submissions to the US EPA and the continued development of our vast array of technologies. As well, we continue to verify the efficacy of our existing technology through independently validated studies."
Mr. Malik, who joined BVT following 13 successful years in the crop protection industry, including executive positions at Bayer CropScience, AgraQuest and Syngenta, added "the Company is following a plan that is well-established for the adoption of new on-farm technologies and that is expected by the industry and growers alike. In 2017, we will continue to develop both existing and new technologies while working closely with the US regulatory bodies to ensure that we are able to begin sales of BVT CR-7 as early as possible."
"In addition to the US market opportunity that exists, we have already initiated conversations with regulatory bodies in both Canada and Europe to expand the reach of our products on a global scale," continued Mr. Malik. "There is a growing need to make agriculture not only more productive but also to do so in a more responsible way by reducing its overall impact on the environment. We have created a unique and compelling technology which gives growers a new crop production tool to meet these challenges."
The Company has met several key milestones:
- Patents Approved: The Company is pursuing an aggressive IP strategy that covers 4 different patent families on its technology and involves 60 patent applications worldwide. The Company has received approval on 11 of these patents in 7 countries worldwide covering all 4 of the patent families; the remaining patents are pending. The patents validate the novelty and innovation in the BVT system and will allow the Company to protect its technology globally from competition;
- Regulatory Submission: In August 2016 the Company submitted its first bio-pesticide BVT CR-7 for regulatory approval to the US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA). The submission followed eight months of rigorous testing to show the product's safety. Regulatory approval by the US EPA is expected in the first half of 2018; additional regulatory submissions will be pursued during 2017.
- Trials Completed: The Company has completed successful trials in strawberries, blueberries, indoor tomatoes and sunflowers in the US, Canada, and Europe. The trials have confirmed the efficacy and productivity improvements achieved with use of BVT system: for example, in strawberries, reductions in gray mold disease of up to 40% and increases in marketable yield up to 30% were achieved when the BVT system was used together with chemical fungicides as compared to treatments when the fungicides were used alone. In sunflower trials at North Dakota State University, the BVT system delivered a 36% reduction in incidence and a 22% reduction in the severity of sclerotinia disease and produced a yield increase in the crop of 8%.
- Partnerships Developing: The Company is gaining significant visibility within the broader industry and is attracting a high level of interest worldwide from potential long term strategic partners. Several new testing agreements have been secured, and the BVT system is being evaluated by these potential partners.
The Company is focusing on two key strategic priorities:
- Commercialization: continue to gain grower acceptance through trials and demos, and secure regulatory approvals which will drive revenue in the prioritized crops. The focus is initially in berry crops in the Southeastern US;
- Selective Market Expansion: expand its accessible market by developing additional crops in the US (e.g. indoor tomatoes, sunflowers), and by submitting for regulatory approval in additional countries.
To drive these priorities in the coming 6 months, the Company is pursuing commercial demonstrations of its proprietary system with influential growers, supporting the review of the BVT CR-7 product at the US EPA and conducting trials in new crops and additional countries.
The Company has progressed several crops past the proof of concept stage and is currently conducting field trials and commercial demos with growers. The path to commercialization includes:
- Crop planning - crops are prioritized based on grower needs, size of the market and the economics and probability of technical success of the technology;
- Proof of concept trials - these are select trials designed to confirm technical fit;
- Field trials - these are replicated trials designed to get statistically significant data. The trials are paid for by the company and are carried out at universities or by contracted researchers under controlled conditions (sometimes on a grower's field);
- Commercial demonstrations - these are carried out on grower fields under field conditions. Demos are secured after the grower is convinced about a possible fit for the technology on their farm by the data from the previous field trials, and are designed to see how the technology can help improve the productivity and economics of the farmer's operation;
- Launch - the final value proposition for the technology is established, the go-to-market plan is developed and the product is available for commercial sales following securing of the regulatory approval.
The Company's objective is to have several opportunities in different stages of the sales cycle at any given growing season. Strawberries have advanced to the commercial demo stage; indoor tomatoes, blueberries and sunflowers are at the field trial stage; almonds are in the proof of concept stage.
About Bee Vectoring Technologies International Inc.
BVT has developed and owns patent-pending bee vectoring technology (consisting of a proprietary tray dispenser containing a unique carrier agent) that is designed to harmlessly utilize commercially reared bumblebees as natural delivery mechanisms for a variety of powdered mixtures comprised of organic compounds that inhibit or eliminate common crop diseases, while at the same time stimulating and enhancing the same crops. This unique and proprietary process facilitates a targeted delivery of crop controls using the simple process of bee pollination to replace traditional crop spraying, resulting in better yield, organic product and less impact on the environment without the use of water or disruptions to labour.
Additional information can be viewed at the Company's website www.beevt.com
On Behalf of Bee Vectoring Technologies International Inc.,
Ashish Malik, President & CEO
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
This press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" that involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties. All statements in this press release, other than statements of historical fact, that address events or developments that BVT expects to occur, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to BVT'S future plans and technologies, including the timing of such plans and technologies. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always, identified by the words "expects", "plans", "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "projects", "potential", "indicate" and similar expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may", "could" or "should" occur. Although BVT believes that the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ materially from those in forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include continued availability of capital, financing and required resources (such as human resources, equipment and/or other capital resources), and general economic, market or business conditions. Investors are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of BVT'S management on the date the statements are made. BVT undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements in the event that management's beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change, except as required by law.