US solid-state battery specialist Solid Power, backed by Ford and BMW, announces its IPO. For the targeted listing on Nasdaq under the ticker symbol SLDP, Solid Power is merging with SPAC company Riverstone Holdings LLC’s Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corporation III.
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The valuation for the combined company is reported to be approximately $1.2 billion. Solid Power expects to raise $600 million in proceeds from the IPO, including funds from a simultaneous capital raise in the form of a $165 million PIPE (“Private Investment in Public Equity”). The PIPE will be participated in by selected investors, namely Koch Strategic Platforms, Riverstone Energy Limited, Neuberger Berman Funds and Van Eck Associates Corporation.
The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021. The potential proceeds from the IPO complement funds of US$130 million raised by Solid Power in a recent financing round. BMW, Ford and Volta Energy Technologies participated in the round. BMW Group and Ford said they have also expanded existing joint development partnerships with Solid Power in parallel to secure the American company’s solid-state batteries for future electric car generations. BMW has been working with Solid Power since 2017, Ford since 2019.
Solid Power plans to use the revenue “to fund operations and support company growth”. Doug Campbell, co-founder and CEO of Solid Power calls the deal with Riverstone Holdings a milestone in the commercialisation of Solid Power’s next generation of solid-state batteries. “In addition to our existing partners Ford and BMW, we are now excited to work with the DCRC team who share our vision of a clean, safe and cost-effective electric future.”
A few weeks ago, Solid Power released more details on its solid-state battery platform for the first time, which is said to enable three different battery designs and be able to reduce the cost of the active cathode material by up to 90 per cent. While the investment by BMW and Ford still stated that the first cells with 20 Ah silicon anode cells would be produced at the end of 2021 (and 100 Ah would follow in 2022), the company now gave a yearly figure for series production at the end of May. The first battery design variant with high silicon anode is to be commercialised by 2026, the one with lithium metal anode “will follow”. A date for the third design variant – a cobalt- and nickel-free cell – was not mentioned.
Update 22 June 2021
Following Solid Power’s announcement of the above’s IPO, Umicore stated today that it holds a stake in Solid Power’s pre-SPAC transaction. The Belgian company did not disclose the sum of their involvement built through two successive investment rounds (series A and B), which Solid Power raised before launching the next phase of its growth through a public listing.
Umicore called Solid Power’s technology “promising”.
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