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June 05, 2023

Paine Schwartz Makes Growth Investment in Elemental Enzymes, a Leading Developer of Naturally Occurring Enzymes and Biochemicals

NEW YORK, NY – June 5, 2023 – Paine Schwartz Partners, a global leader in sustainable food chain investing, today announced that it has completed a strategic growth investment by Paine Schwartz Food Chain Fund VI in Elemental Enzymes (the “Company”), a leading developer of naturally occurring enzymes and biochemicals for use in commercial agriculture. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in 2011, Elemental Enzymes is headquartered in St. Louis, MO and specializes in enzyme, peptide, protein, and biological chemistry solutions contributing to improved plant health, yield, and profitability. The Company’s products have high-potency and low-volume use rates, which allows for higher margins and lower capex requirements. Its go-to-market strategy successfully leverages large B2B customer capabilities for market access delivering fully integrated solutions for growers.

The Company will have 17 products in market in 2023 sold through global commercial partners throughout five geographies, with 345 total patent applications. By 2027, the Company expects to launch 115 products across nine Active Ingredients. Elemental Enzymes is well positioned in the fast-growing, approximately $9 billion, biologicals segment of the crop protection market.

Elemental Enzymes is successfully tackling complex problems in agriculture ranging from abiotic stress to Asian Soybean Rust to Citrus Greening. The Company’s products are identified by three main uses:

  • Nutrient Use Efficiency – increases fertilizer effectiveness by preventing absorption and binding to soils, volatilization, leaching and surface water runoff.
  • Stress Mitigation – mitigates plant stress by reducing water vapor loss, increasing protein stability and content, and providing quicker plant recovery and sustained growth.
  • Pest Pressure – complements fungicide resistance management programs by providing new crop spray timings that prevent disease earlier and more effectively.

The Company’s management team led by Co-Founder and CEO Dr. Brian Thompson, Co-Founder and COO Dr. Katie Thompson and Co-Founder and CSO Dr. Ashley Siegel will continue operating the business with support from the Paine Schwartz team.

“We are excited about this investment from Paine Schwartz, which marks the next phase in our effort to build the world’s leading supplier of sustainable agricultural inputs,” said Brian Thompson, CEO and Co-Founder of Elemental Enzymes. “The Paine Schwartz team brings significant expertise and resources that will help us across our business including launching new products, expanding our technical and R&D capabilities, and entering new markets and segments. We look forward to working closely with them to build on our strong foundation and capture new growth opportunities by addressing some of the most complex issues in agriculture head-on.”

Kevin Schwartz, CEO of Paine Schwartz, said, “This strategic investment in Elemental Enzymes is directly aligned with our long-term thesis of identifying companies that sustainably increase productivity in the agriculture space. The Company has an impressive suite of products, a robust R&D pipeline, blue-chip customer relationships and a track record of accelerating growth. We look forward to working closely with Brian and the Elemental Enzymes team to capture market share in the rapidly growing biologicals segment of the crop protection market.”

This strategic investment in Elemental Enzymes builds on Paine Schwartz’s longstanding and successful track record of investing in the input and distribution segments of Crop Productivity and Sustainability, including current investments in AgBiTech, Advanced Agrilytics, AgroFresh, Axiota, and HGS Bioscience.

Additional funding provided to Elemental Enzymes came from the Missouri Technology Corporation TechLaunch Funds Program, St. Louis Arch Angels and Centennial Investors Angel Investor Network in 2012.


Akin Gump served as legal counsel to Paine Schwartz.

About Elemental Enzymes

Elemental Enzymes, a St. Louis based company, is catalyzing the future of agriculture with innovative, cross-disciplinary scientific solutions to solve complex problems impacting growers today. Elemental Enzymes creates patented enzymes, peptides and biochemical solutions that improve nutrient uptake, water management and water use efficiency, plant health and yield, as well as disease protection. For more information, please visit

About Paine Schwartz Partners

A global leader in sustainable food chain investing, Paine Schwartz Partners is a private equity firm focused exclusively on investment opportunities in the fast-growing, dynamic global food and agribusiness sectors. The firm’s investment, operations and finance professionals invest throughout cycles across the food and agribusiness value chain, and bring a collaborative and active management approach to portfolio companies. For further information, please see

About Missouri Technology Corporation

The Missouri Technology Corporation is a public-private partnership created by the Missouri General Assembly to promote entrepreneurship and foster the growth of new and emerging high-tech companies. MTC focuses on 21st Century bioscience industries that build on Missouri’s rich history in agriculture.


Paine Schwartz Media Contact

Andy Brimmer / Aaron Palash

Joele Frank, Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher

+1 212-355-4449