Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2008

Biopharmaceutical company lands funding from public, private programs

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Gaithersburg biopharmaceutical company Sirnaomics Inc. has received funding from a variety of government programs. The company, founded in early 2007, is involved in novel drug discovery and targeted therapeutics development to treat human diseases.

The company’s multi-targeted siRNA therapeutic programs and its nanoparticle-enhanced delivery technologies have helped attract grants and investments from the state Department of Business and Economic Development, Maryland Industrial Partnerships and the Montgomery County Technology Growth Programs, according to a Sirnaomics statement.

Sirnaomics’ founder, president and CEO, Patrick Y. Lu said the funding ‘‘not only supplies initial fuel for us to take off, but more importantly provides solid foundation for our staged financing strategy, to ensure the long term health of the company’s financial structure.”

Lu said he could not yet release details on the government funding, but said the angel investment so far is ‘‘in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

Lockheed top federalcontractor in 2006

Lockheed Martin Corp. of Bethesda led all federal contractors last year with $32.1 billion, or 7.74 percent of the total, according to data released by the Office of Management and Budget for the first time, the result of last year’s federal Transparency Act.

The data showed Maryland maintaining its rank as the fourth-leading state in federal contracts. As the government has relied more on outside contractors instead of its agencies, Maryland nearly doubled its total of contracts from $13.7 billion in 2000 to $24 billion in 2006. Virginia led with $62.7 billion. Maryland’s slice of the contracting pie, however, got thinner over that period, falling from 6.58 percent in 2000 to 5.78 percent last year.

Federal government contract spending increased from $209 billion in 2000 to $415 billion in 2006.

The full report is available at www.usaspending.gov.

BAE to pay $450Mfor Ohio company

Aerospace and information technology giant BAE Systems of Rockville plans to acquire MTC Technologies Inc. of Dayton, Ohio, in a deal worth about $450 million.

MTC Technologies, with 2,900 employees and 40 offices across the United States, provides technical and professional services, and equipment integration and modernization for U.S. military and intelligence agencies. The company reported revenue of $414.5 million for 2006.

‘‘MTC Technologies is an excellent addition to BAE Systems,” said Walt Havenstein, BAE Systems president and CEO, in a statement. ‘‘This acquisition helps us become an even more effective prime contractor ... we will have a greater capability to meet our customers’ most demanding needs, specifically in the areas of readiness and sustainment.”

India mission bringsdeals, agreements

Icreon Communications, an Indian software company, planned to launch its U.S. operations from Austin, Texas — until a delegation from Montgomery County’s Department of Economic Development visited company officials in November and persuaded them to consider the county.

As a result, Icreon officials canceled their plans for Texas and have visited incubators in Rockville and Silver Spring. They plan to return in April to complete the application process and have also entered into discussions with Indigo Arc of Rockville about forming a business partnership.

The Icreon developments are one result of the trade mission, according to a county statement.

Also, the Electronics Software Export Promotion Council of India plans to bring five member companies to visit Montgomery County next month. Through a grant from the Indian government, the council plans to lease space in the new Rockville incubator to serve as the U.S. hub for the five advanced technology companies to launch their North American operations.

These items originally appeared in The Business Gazette.