Mascoma to Cut Staff, Leave Boston

Boston-based Mascoma, a startup developing techniques for making ethanol from high-cellulose feedstock such as wood chips, said yesterday it will consolidate its operations in a new office building and R&D facility in Lebanon, NH, near the Dartmouth College location where the company was founded, and where the majority of its workers are already employed.

The move will mean closing the company’s current headquarters on Soldiers Field Road in Boston and reducing the company’s staff by 12 to 15 employees. The cutbacks are the result of  “elimination of redundant functions and inability of some staff to relocate,” the company said. The move will take place by September.

With everyone at the company under one roof, R&D, engineering, and business development staff will be able to work together more closely, the company said. “The move will provide three things: it will make our production process scale-up easier, provide operating efficiencies, and lower costs,” Mascoma chairman and CEO Bruce Jamerson said in a statement. “I am also looking forward to spending more time with our scientific staff as our technology migrates from the lab into production.”

The company also said consolidating will allow Mascoma to reduce its carbon footprint by eliminating trips between offices. The cuts won’t affect operations at the company’s demonstration facility in Rome, NY, or its plans to build a commercial-scale facility with partner Frontier Renewable Resources in Kinross, MI.

Wade Roush is a freelance science and technology journalist and the producer and host of the podcast Soonish. Follow @soonishpodcast

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