Solugen

14549 Minetta St., Houston TX 77035

Position

Director of Technology and Alliance Management (Government)

About Solugen:

Solugen, Inc. is a revolutionary technology company using biology to transform the chemicals industry. Solugen was founded in 2016 and is a post-Series C venture-backed startup, located in Houston, Texas. Solugen is currently scaling up its manufacturing facility to use its chemienzymatic process to manufacture biobased chemistries for a wide variety of industries and end uses. Solugen currently has 100+ full time employees.

Mission

Solugen’s mission is to decarbonize chemicals manufacturing. As a first step, Solugen has built a 10,000 tpy commercial plant with the potential to offset up to 37,000 tpy of carbon dioxide equivalents and is actively working on a rapid expansion of this capacity.

This role will directly support Solugen’s mission by ensuring Solugen can effectively interact the US government’s research and development enterprise (national labs, DOD research bodies, FFRDCs, etc.) to develop successful demonstrations of the power of the chemienzymatic process. The most critical function of this role is acting as the technological evangelist for the revolutionary power of in-situ biomanufacturing, with a special focus on exploring and creating new commercially relevant opportunities. To accomplish this, the ideal candidate will have a strong desire to help the team reimagine the US government’s chemical portfolio, build badly needed resilience into its chemical supply chain, and prove that the next advanced manufacturing revolution will be bio-based.

Key Outcomes

  1. Manage Solugen’s existing portfolio of active and pending R&D efforts with the US government, including interfacing with external technical partners, aligning cross-functional teams within the company, and vetting and managing 3rd party support providers (consultants, testing labs, etc.) to accomplish contractual requirements.
  2. Identify and vet ~10 new opportunities for collaboration and partnerships with US government R&D facilities, FFRDCs, or potential teaming partners that operate in the federal chemical and advanced material space over the first 12 months. This will include sourcing opportunities, driving the business case for the opportunity, and initiating outreach efforts to the partner. To be clear, Solugen Government operates as a team – this is not an individual contributor role; however, the ideal candidate will have the entrepreneurial drive to make major contributions to the team’s output.
  3. The government team coordinates and leads grant writing activities for the company. This role will lead technical volume writing activities for the government team, establish a working relationship with cross-functional teams inside Solugen that are considering writing a grant, and coordinate 3rd party advisors that may be asked to assist in the process. The team expects to write between 1 – 2 full grant proposals per month for the foreseeable future.

Key Competencies

Job Specific

- Substantial technical background that includes chemical product management, bioindustrial manufacturing, or another closely related topic. Must be qualified and comfortable to speak as the technical voice of Solugen to US government technical experts in agencies like DARPA, ARPA-E, NREL, USD(R&E), etc.

- Familiarity with the US government’s R&D enterprise.

- Intrinsically driven to accomplish Solugen’s mission.

- Entrepreneurial drive, specifically meaning the willingness to state a non-obvious business hypothesis, perform iterative tests on that hypothesis, and being willing to either fail fast or double down based on the results of those tests.

- Divergent thinker: the ideal candidate will be comfortable coming up with multiple ways to accomplish a goal in the presence of uncertainty.

- Team-first mentality.

- Ability to work remotely with likely light travel (~1-2 days per 6 weeks).

Company Specific

- Ask a lot of questions, be curious, and have insights into your work

- Be nimble, embrace the speed and ambiguity of startup culture.

- A passion for green chemistry and fighting climate change.

- Ability to self-manage and set your own priorities and schedule.

- Be comfortable working in multiple roles.

- Emphasize safety above all else.

- Respect for others.

- Creative problem solving.

- Willingness to learn and research new engineering/science concepts.

Qualifications

PhD in Chemical Engineering or related field and minimum 2 years full-time experience working in a technical role, either in industry or at a research institution. Candidates with a Master’s degree may be considered if they have substantial relevant work experience.

Solugen is an Equal Opportunity Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other legally protected status.