Seed World

KWS Invests €20 Million in New Research Building

KWS is creating more space to cope with the increase in its research activities by investing around €20 million in a new, cutting-edge laboratory and office building at its headquarters in Einbeck.

“The number of our breeding programs for new, high-performance varieties has continued to grow. Traditional breeding is increasingly flanked and sped up by laboratory analyses. We are also pursuing new research projects in precision breeding. As a result, there is a greater need for molecular biology analyses. We’ll be able to do all that better in the new building, which will have around 100 workplaces,” says Léon Broers, the KWS Executive Board member responsible for research.

The three-story building is particularly energy-efficient and complies with the KFW 55 standard, which is far more stringent than the statutory requirements. The building will need just 55 percent of the energy of a reference building. Numerous companies from the Einbeck region are involved in its construction. The building will be finished in early 2020, and it will have a partly green facade. The labs will have a modular design and can be adapted to new tasks quickly and easily as and when required. The working groups from Cell Biology, Chemistry and Molecular Biology Research, among others, will move into it.

Apart from the state-of-the-art lab areas, employees will enjoy greater communication space to enable dialogue between departments.

“We’ll also redesign the space that becomes vacant in the other lab buildings so as to meet our constantly growing needs,” added Broers. KWS is thus addressing the fact that lab work and computer-aided analysis of its results are becoming more and more closely intermeshed.

KWS is a research-intensive company. It spent almost €200 million on research, or around 19 percent of net sales, on research in the past 2017/2018 fiscal year.

“Our independence means we alone decide on our investments and research expenditure. And as part of that, we’ve always thought in long periods of time: It takes about ten years for us to put a new variety on the market,” said Broers. “We also have that staying power regarding our investments in science. The new building is thus also a clear commitment to Einbeck as a research location.”