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Nexeon ramps up for silicon anode production with $80m

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

UK silicon anode pioneer Nexeon has raised $80m to ramp up production along with a partnership with a global battery and semiconductor materials company.

The backing comes from a consortium including global battery and semiconductor materials company SKC in Korea along with SJL Partners, BNW Investment and Kiwoom Private Equity.

The fundraising and formation of a manufacturing partnership are part of Nexeon’s manufacturing strategy to accelerate the supply of its groundbreaking silicon anode materials at volume in order to meet the rapidly increasing demands from major automotive and consumer electronics customers across Europe, North America, and Asia.

The deal is key as companies around the world such as Amprius and Nanograf are racing to enter production of a stable silicon material that can be used to boost the performance of lithium ion batteries. Silicon can store significantly more energy than carbon but swells, creating a number of problems. Nexeon, based in Oxford, has been working on silicon anode technology for over a decade.

SKC is a $5bn materials company in Korea with a strategic focus on rechargeable battery, semiconductor and eco-friendly materials, and a global presence in Europe, North America, and Asia. SJL is a private equity firm that seeks cross-border investments in partnership with Asia-based strategic investors.

The company raised £30m in 2016 for the development and more recently saw a 25 percent major investment by European chemical company Wacker Chemie.

“We are very excited that our new partners have recognized the value of our silicon anode materials, and this move will accelerate production ramp up and facilitate access to markets across the globe”, said Dr Scott Brown, CEO of Nexeon. “This significant investment clearly validates the tremendous technical and commercial progress we have made, and we look forward to working with our new partners to deliver our materials in volume to consumer electronics and EV customers alike.”

“We are extremely pleased to have been able to close this deal with Nexeon”, said Dr Junghwan Shin, Vice President New Business Development. “SKC is committed to implementing our ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) policy, and we see silicon anode materials, and this strategic relationship with Nexeon, as a key step in delivering on our commitment.”

“Batteries are the key technology of our time and present a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to transform transportation and positively impact the environment. Nexeon’s silicon materials are a key enabler in the delivery of better batteries and we are extremely excited about this investment” said Steve Lim, Chairman and Managing Partner of SJL.

www.nexeon.com

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