Walter Rakitsky joined TerraVia as senior director of business and strategy in late 2007 after earning his M.B.A. in Entrepreneurial Management from The Wharton School.
Dr. Rakitsky has more than 25 years of experience in applied research and development, business development, business-to-business marketing, commercial development, and business management. Before joining TerraVia, he was vice president of commercial development for Advanced BioNutrition, a venture capital-backed company developing algae-derived functional ingredients to improve animal health and nutrition. Dr. Rakitsky led the sales and marketing efforts to introduce algal biomass products rich in omega 3’s to the companion animal, aquaculture, and terrestrial animal industries.
Prior to Advanced BioNutrition, Dr. Rakitsky spent 17 years at CP Kelco, a global manufacturer of ingredients for food, industrial, and oil field industries. While there, he founded the Kelco Biospecialties Group, which identified and developed new opportunities for fermentation products, developed and implemented the strategic direction of the Kelco Food Biopolymers business, and introduced new specialty ingredients to the food and industrial industries. Prior to these roles, Dr. Rakitsky had global accountability for technology development as director of Applied R&D for Kelco.
Before joining Kelco, Dr. Rakitsky managed the fuels R&D efforts for the OXCE Fuel Company, developed products for Nalco’s Mining and Mineral Processing Group, and collaborated on chemicals from coal project at Occidental Petroleum.
Dr. Rakitsky received his Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from Pennsylvania State University and his M.B.A. from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.