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Verenium Completes Amendment to 8% Senior Convertible Notes

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., July 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Verenium Corporation (Nasdaq: VRNM) announced today that the agreement to amend the $29.5 million of outstanding 8% Senior Convertible Notes due April 1, 2012 (the "Notes") entered into and announced on July 1, 2009 is effective as of 8:00 a.m. today. The Company has entered into Convertible Note Amendment Agreements with holders of 87% of the Notes, which is above the required 66.67% necessary to amend the outstanding Notes. Lazard Freres & Co. LLC acted as an advisor for this transaction.

"We are pleased to have been able to work with our 8% noteholders to amended the terms of the notes, removing or modifying several restrictions that limited the Company's financial and operational flexibility," said Carlos A. Riva, President and Chief Executive Officer at Verenium. "This along with the recent news that our joint venture with our partner BP has been selected to enter into the due diligence phase of the DOE Loan Guarantee Program, puts us in a much stronger position as we look toward securing the necessary financing required for our first commercial facility."

In exchange for lowering the conversion price of the Notes from $2.13 to $1.74, the benefits Verenium receives from the amendment include:

  • Modifications providing Verenium with greater flexibility to engage in certain financing and other strategic transactions, including the ability to incur indebtedness or liens and engage in restructuring transactions involving its 5.50% convertible senior notes;
  • Modifications that allow the company to raise capital with less dilution to the existing shareholders; and
  • Clarifications that provide for interest and make-whole payments to be made in shares of our common stock.

"The amendments that are effective today are an important first step towards creating a balance sheet for Verenium that can support the capital needs of the Company going forward," said James E. Levine, Chief Financial Officer at Verenium.

The material terms of the exchange are described in more detail in the Company's Current Report on Form 8-K, filed on July 1, 2009 with the Securities and Exchange Commission. This press release is not an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any securities, nor shall it constitute an offer, solicitation, or sale in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale is unlawful.

About Verenium

Verenium Corporation is a leader in the development and commercialization of cellulosic ethanol, an environmentally-friendly and renewable transportation fuel, as well as high-performance specialty enzymes for applications within the biofuels, industrial, and animal health markets. The Company possesses integrated, end-to-end capabilities and cutting-edge technology in pre-treatment, novel enzyme development, fermentation and project development for next-generation biofuels. Through a joint venture with BP, the Company is moving rapidly to commercialize its proprietary technology for the production of ethanol from a wide array of non-food feedstocks, including dedicated energy crops, agricultural waste, and wood products. In addition to the vast potential for biofuels, a multitude of large-scale industrial opportunities exist for the Company for products derived from the production of low-cost, biomass-derived sugars.

Verenium's Specialty Enzyme business harnesses the power of enzymes to create a broad range of specialty products to meet high-value commercial needs. Verenium's world class R&D organization is renowned for its capabilities in the rapid screening, identification, and expression of enzymes - proteins that act as the catalysts of biochemical reactions. For more information on Verenium, visit

Forward Looking Statements

Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical are "forward-looking" and involve a high degree of risk and uncertainty. These include, but are not limited to, statements related to the Company's operations, capabilities, commercialization activities, target markets, cellulosic ethanol facilities, and future financial performance, results and objectives, all of which are prospective. Such statements are only predictions, and actual events or results may differ materially from those projected in such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to the differences include, but are not limited to, risks associated with Verenium's technologies, risks associated with the costs, labor requirements and labor availability associated with Verenium's demonstration plant, risks associated with Verenium's ability to obtain additional capital to support its planned operations and financial obligations, risks associated with Verenium's dependence on patents and proprietary rights, risks associated with Verenium's protection and enforcement of its patents and proprietary rights, technological, regulatory, competitive and other risks related to development, production, and commercialization of cellulosic ethanol and other biofuels and the commercial prospects of those industries, Verenium's dependence on existing collaboration, manufacturing, and/or license agreements, and its ability to achieve milestones under existing and future collaboration agreements, the ability of Verenium and its partners to commercialize its technologies and products (including by obtaining any required regulatory approvals) using Verenium's technologies and timing for launching any commercial products and projects, the ability of Verenium and its collaborators to market and sell any products that it or they commercialize, the development or availability of competitive products or technologies, the future ability of Verenium to enter into and/or maintain collaboration and joint venture agreements and licenses, changes in the U.S. or global energy markets and laws and regulations applicable to them, and risks and other uncertainties more fully described in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the Company's quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the three months ended March 31, 2009. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date hereof, and the Company expressly disclaims any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements.

    Verenium Contacts:
    Kelly Lindenboom
    Vice President, Corporate Communications

    Sarah Carmody
    Sr. Corporate Communications Associate

SOURCE Verenium Corporation
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