Bill Gates-backed bio startup expanding in NYC

C16 Biosciences takes 20K sf at Taconic and Silverstein’s Far West Side life sciences building

Bill Gates and 619 West 54th Street (Getty, Taconic Partners)
Bill Gates and 619 West 54th Street (Getty, Taconic Partners)

A Bill Gates-backed biotech startup that’s developing a sustainable alternative to palm oil is expanding in New York.

C16 Biosciences is moving out of the NYU Langone biotech co-working space in Soho into 20,000 square feet at the Hudson Research Center on the Far West Side.

Company co-founder Shara Ticku said she was drawn to the “location, flexible lab space and amenities” at the research center, which is owned by Taconic Partners and Silverstein Properties.

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The startup will move into 20,000 square feet of pre-built lab space and office space on the seventh floor of the building at 619 West 54th Street at the end of the summer. The company was founded in 2017 to find environmentally friendly alternatives to palm oil, a $61 billion industry that leaves a huge environmental footprint.

Gates’ Breakthrough Energy venture led a $20 million Series A funding round in c16 Bio last year.

Demand for biotech and life-sciences space is booming, leading to a land rush by investors who are looking to add more than 36 million square feet of new space in the country’s top 14 markets.

Taconic acquired the 322,000-square-foot Far West Side building in 2012 for $110 million, and Silverstein purchased a stake in the property in 2017. The partners refinanced the property last year a $205 million loan from Square Mile Capital.