Stevia Corp. ("Stevia Corp." or the "Company"), a farm management company focused on the economic development of stevia, the fastest growing product in the alternative sweetener sector, is pleased to announce the signing on July 5 of several definitive agreements with technology partners Tech-New Bio-Technology ("TechNew") and their affiliates which resulted in technology and intellectual property transfers and the creation of Stevia Technew Limited, a Hong Kong-registered company.
The Stevia Technew Limited venture is 70 percent owned by Stevia Corp. with the remaining 30 percent held by TechNew. As part of the agreements, Stevia Technew Limited has further acquired from TechNew all current and future stevia formulation technologies, including eight formulations actively used in feed & fertilizer agriculture and aquaculture applications.
TechNew was founded by Mr. Zhang Ji (Jacky) in 2008 and currently services more than 200 aquaculture farms in China. Operations include facilitation of 225 acres of prawn farms and responsibility for 10,000 acres of mixed aquaculture in Guangdong Province. Mr. Zhang Ji is also the Vice Chairman of the Guangzhou Aquaculture Association and the Chairman of the Panyu Aquaculture Association (the largest member association in Guangzhou). He also manages 2,000 greenhouses in Shanghai and aims to work with his numerous business affiliations and personal relationships in an effort to increase visibility of Stevia Technew in order to aid the provision of technical advice and assistance for the Company's contract farming that utilizes stevia formulations.
As a result of the venture, Stevia Technew now exclusively provides 100 percent of the dry stevia plant product including all leaf and stem used in stevia formulations. These formulations not only provide a naturally enhanced sweetness, they are incorporated into fertilizers that address soil acidification, compaction and fertility decline caused by chemical fertilizer overuse; foliar fertilizers that help plants resist infection and disease; feed formulations for livestock, fish and shrimp that enhance digestion and help strengthen immunity; and microbiological preparations that address pollution in marine environments that negatively impact aquaculture activities.
George Blankenbaker, Stevia Corp. President, comments, "The signing of these agreements is a major milestone for our Company. We are now in a position to offer new stevia formulations and products that open up new markets to us including the $85 billion dollar Asian aquaculture market that is growing at double digits. The opportunities are immense and we are at the forefront of a high growth sector with the added benefit of working with Mr. Zhang Ji and his talented team. We are excited and thrilled by the prospects ahead."