Circu Li-ion receives millions in seed funding
According to the announcement, the financing will be provided in a mix of equity from BonVenture (one of Germany’s leading impact VC funds), industry experts and the management team (a total of 4.5 million euros) as well as funding from the EIC Accelerator and cooperations with recycling companies and OEMs – this part accounts for the other four million euros. Apart from BonVenture, however, no investors are mentioned by name.
In addition to functional growth, Circu Li-ion plans to expand its main production facility near Karlsruhe to 2000 m2 and at the same time further expand its Berlin branch.
According to the company, the automated battery upcycling process saves up to 48 per cent in CO2 emissions compared to the conventional life cycle of Li-ion batteries. Circu Li-ion now employs 34 people at its sites in Karlsruhe, Berlin and Luxembourg and counts various OEMs, including from the electromobility sector (e-cars, e-scooters and e-bikes), and recycling companies among its customers, with whom it works on a sustainable battery recycling cycle. Circu Li-ion formulates the goal of recycling three billion batteries by 2035.
The AI algorithms are to be used to optimise the processes in recycling, i.e. in unloading, dismantling and disassembling the used batteries. This is intended to reduce manual labour time and minimise environmental impact, according to the company. With the company’s own facility in Karlsruhe, it should be possible to carry out “clean upcycling” for customers – as “Disassembly-as-a-Service”.
The data collected in the process will be reused; Circu Li-ion wants to build the “world’s largest data repository for battery recycling”. “By employing real-time data collection and analytical algorithms, Circu Li-ion won’t just house but also enable actionable insights from the world’s largest battery recycling data repository, thus facilitating data-driven decision-making across the platform,” the company wrote.
Further, by using AI, Circu Li-ion aims to “raise the standard for battery sorting” and introduce an intelligent sorting system that improves accuracy, shortens sorting times and ensures maximum recovery of recyclables.
“We’re happy to double down on our development speed, turning this fresh funding into smarter, data-focused solutions that make battery recycling economically and ecologically viable for everyone,” says Antoine Welter, CEO and co-founder of Circu Li-ion. “For this, the key is a great team – we will further invest in our team and double our size of currently 34 colleagues within the next twelve months.”
Nikolaj Klebert, Investment Manager at BonVenture, added: “Since the first contact with the outstanding team, we have been enthusiastic about the highly dynamic environment of battery up- and recycling in which they have occupied the field very early and taken a dominant role. Circu Li-Ion puts a stop to the current destruction of value in the form of a technically sophisticated and particularly innovative solution, thus unlocking previously inaccessible potential down to the level of the individual cell.”
Source: Info via email