Sodium-Ion Battery Startup UNIGRID Battery Gets $12mn Funding

Sodium-Ion Battery Startup UNIGRID Battery Gets $12mn Funding Sodion Energy , AR4 Tie Up To Launch Sodium-Ion Batteries For India 

UNIGRID Battery, a San Diego-based startup developing advanced sodium-ion batteries, has announced a successful close of an oversubscribed $12 Million Series A funding round. The financing was Co-led by Transition VC and Ritz Venture Capital and joined by new investor Union Square Ventures and existing investor Foothill Ventures. The investment will accelerate and scale-up UNIGRID’s battery production to fulfill MWh-scale customer orders in the electric mobility and stationary storage markets.

“Advanced sodium-ion batteries will be a key enabler of widespread, distributed energy storage in the residential, commercial, and industrial markets. As a technology leader in this space, UNIGRID already has commercial-scale orders, and will use the funds to expand manufacturing and customer fulfillment capabilities,” said Darren H. S. Tan, CEO for UNIGRID Battery.

UNIGRID is one of the global players in boosting the growth of sodium-ion battery technology innovation. It claims to focus on developing high energy density sodium-ion batteries. Using its proprietary alloy anode technology, it addresses a crucial sodium-ion bottleneck, energy density. The battery chemistry doubles the volumetric energy density of sodium-ion and enables it to exceed the energy density of lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries.

Its technology also reportedly eliminates the use of critical or rarer materials such as lithium, cobalt, nickel, and copper, from its battery chemistry entirely, instead using only abundant materials. It also said to achieve safety and performance metrics that exceed that of LFP.

“To keep up with intermittent renewables and to electrify many end-applications, we need more energy storage. Storage that is safe, affordable, and made from abundant resources. Our venture partner Bruis has been following UNIGRID’s journey for over a year. The technology surpases industry standards in terms of energy density and safety metrics. The UNIGRID team couples the technology breakthrough with commercial execution that we rarely see from startups at this stage,” stated Mona Alsubaei, Partner at Transition.

“The unprecedented performance demonstrated in UNIGRID’s sodium-ion batteries presents a unique opportunity not only in the stationary storage space, but also in the fast growing electric mobility space, addressing core challenges of safety, wide temperature operation and downward price pressures of electric vehicles,” noted Sangbin Ong, Managing Director at Ritz Venture Capital.

A key strength to UNIGRID’s technology is its drop-in compatibility with conventional Li-ion battery manufacturing infrastructure, along with off-the-shelf availability of materials in the existing supply chain. As such, the team currently works with battery manufacturing partners to immediately scale its products, avoiding the need for highly customized equipment or the redesigning of tools, which has been a barrier for various next generation battery technologies. This has resonated well with customers and system integrators looking for immediate alternatives to Li-ion batteries.

About UNIGRID Battery

UNIGRID Battery, a University of California, San Diego spin-off company, was founded in 2021 from the groundbreaking Ph.D. research work by Dr. Darren H. S. Tan and Dr. Erik A. Wu, who were both advised by Prof. Zheng Chen and Prof. Shirley Meng, prominent figures in the battery field. The company develops advanced sodium-ion batteries to power emerging energy storage and electric mobility applications.

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