Pluton Biosciences Founder Dr. Barry Goldman Assumes Chief Executive Officer Position
St. Louis, MO, USA - April 13, 2021The biotech startup’s first CEO Charlie Walch Named Chief Business Officer
Pluton Biosciences is proud to announce that its founder Dr. Barry Goldman, PhD, has assumed the role of Chief Executive Officer. Pluton's first CEO Charlie Walch has been named the company's Chief Business Officer.
Pluton is a natural product development company dedicated to discovering new microbes to drive environmental sustainability practices worldwide. Pluton’s current product efforts focus on agriculture, using microbes to fight climate change "down on the farm" and replace synthetic chemical applications with eco-friendly microbial products. Pluton uses Micromining®, its high-throughput microbial discovery platform, to identify and isolate novel bacteria, fungi, and viruses within months and not years, dramatically improving R&D throughput for agtech companies. Pluton has raised $2 million in pre-seed and seed funding to date, with plans to raise a Series A of more than $10 million in the coming year.
Walch will remain active on Pluton’s Board of Directors and continue to oversee the company’s day-to-day operations, as well as negotiate customer contracts in his new position.
"This change in leadership makes sense. Now that Pluton has grown out of its infancy and has established customers, a strong science pipeline, and key hires in place, we are ready to take our business to the next level with Dr. Goldman in the lead role," said Walch.
Dr. Goldman, who previously held the title of Pluton’s Chief Scientific Officer, will continue overseeing the company’s science team while taking the lead as CEO for the growing biotech startup.
"Charlie has done a terrific job bringing Pluton to where it is today. We are well-positioned to develop innovative natural products to fight climate change and make agriculture sustainable through the 21st century," said Dr. Goldman. "I am excited to be able to bring my product ideas and vision to fruition as Pluton’s CEO."
Prior to going full-time at Pluton, Dr. Goldman worked for Boston-based Indigo Ag from 2016 to 2019 where he served first as Vice President of Discovery, then as Head of Research. During his tenure, Indigo’s research team grew from 15 to over 100 scientists. From 1999 to 2016, Goldman launched various science initiatives at Monsanto Company. He founded the Data Science Department and served as the Microbial Discovery Lead for what is now Bayer Crop Sciences. He has a Bachelor of Science in Botany from the University of Washington and a PhD in Microbiology from the University of Utah. He has published over 35 peer-reviewed studies and is an inventor on more than 16 patents.
Pluton is currently conducting a research agreement with Bayer Crop Sciences to investigate the development of an all-natural, microbial-based carbon-capture soil amendment for growers. In May 2020, Pluton was selected for the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator and a partnership with the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center. In June 2020, Pluton became the first St. Louis-based biotech company selected for the Illumina Accelerator, a company creation engine started by San Diego-based, global DNA sequencing leader Illumina, Inc. This February, Pluton became the first St. Louis based agtech company to participate in Plug and Play, a venture capital accelerator based in Silicon Valley.