Britishvolt gigafactory company valued at more than $ 1 billion
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The company, which is building the UK’s first battery gigafactory, was valued at more than $ 1 billion in its most recent financing round and is catering to the increasing demand for investments in the energy transition.
Britishvolt has around 70 million
The fundraising marks another milestone for the company founded in 2019 by Orral Nadjari, a former investment banker. It comes just weeks after the battery start-up began building its facility on the site of a decommissioned coal-fired power station in Northumberland.
Kasra Pezeshki, Britishvolt’s chief investment officer, said the funding round underscored the demand for investments backed by environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria.
Proponents of the project say the Britishvolt plant in Blyth will help boost an electric car industry in the UK and also make it easier for the government to meet its carbon reduction targets.
With the UK banning the sale of gasoline and diesel vehicles from 2030, the auto industry is under pressure to build infrastructure, including battery suppliers, to produce electric cars and protect jobs.
Due to the weight of electric batteries, they have to be manufactured close to the rest of the vehicles.
Mining company Glencore announced last month that it had acquired a stake in the company under a long-term agreement to supply cobalt.
Britishvolt is aiming for 30 gigawatt hours of capacity from its Gigafactory, enough batteries to power 300,000 electric vehicles, with first production expected in late 2023.
More than two-thirds of the company’s Phase 1 capacity of 10 GWh has been signed by three unnamed customers, according to people familiar with the details.
To fund the total cost of the $ 3.6 billion project, Britishvolt is considering a listing on the London Stock Exchange or a merger with a special purpose vehicle in New York. It also wants to tap into the government’s Automotive Transformation Fund for funding. Barclays advises Britishvolt.
Earlier this year, rival battery startup Northvolt raised $ 2.75 billion from investors like Volkswagen and Goldman Sachs for its gigafactory in northern Sweden.
This round of financing has shown the interest in gigafactories. It has also allocated $ 12 billion to Northvolt and will help the company expand capacity from 40 GWh to 60 GWh per year.
In the UK, a number of companies are in talks with the government to build gigafactories, but only Britishvolt, which has not yet revealed a sample battery cell, and Nissan have publicly announced plans.
Britishvolt says the Blyth plant will initially employ 1,000 people and then rise to more than 3,000 when fully utilized, creating much-needed jobs in one of the poorer parts of the UK.
It is widely recognized that the company has secured the best location in the country to develop a gigafactory – a 93 acre property with access to a deep sea port and hydropower from Norway via a North Sea interconnector. It is also working with Circulor, a supply chain tracking group, on developing a carbon emissions benchmark for giant factories.
Nadjari remains Britishvolt’s largest shareholder with a stake of around 30 percent. William Harrison, an American billionaire, owns 19 percent.