Koch Invests in Li-Cycle and Other Firms in EV Value Chain

Koch Invests in Li-Cycle and Other Firms in EV Value Chain

US firm Koch Strategic Platforms (KSP) has announced a $100 million investment in Toronto-based Li-Cycle – the leading lithium-ion battery recycler in North America – to help meet the rapidly growing global demand to source and recycle critical and scarce battery-grade materials.

This is only the latest investment in the EV value chain for Koch companies, including deals with next-gen battery cell developer FREYR, thermal aerogel producer Aspen Aerogels, zinc-powered energy storage system producer Eos Energy and e-mobility company REE Automotive.

From cellphones to energy storage systems to electric vehicles, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are seemingly everywhere these days. But once they reach the end of life, they often end up in landfills with valuable, non-renewable materials still inside, like nickel, cobalt and manganese. KSP’s investment in Li-Cycle will support the company’s ability to address a growing addressable market in North America, Europe and Asia.

Improving the scale of lithium-ion battery recycling and recovery is critical to the transformation of the electric vehicle (EV) value chain, said KSP President David Park. Uttar Pradesh-based Lohum Cleantech, which provides a lithium-ion batteries and battery recycling solutions, is an Indian player operating in the same recycling space.

The investment will also enable Li-Cycle to tap into expertise across KSP, including Koch Engineered Solutions (KES), which specializes in design, engineering, equipment, project management, service and analytics to help industrial customers improve operations through improved efficiency and safety and reduced waste and emissions.

KES and their Optimized Process Designs group are exploring opportunities to support the incremental global deployment of Li-Cycle’s Spokes – part of the company’s Spoke & Hub system to recycle lithium-ion batteries. The Spoke facilities process lithium-ion batteries into battery materials (a.k.a. black mass) and mixed copper/aluminum before they are processed at Hub facilities into battery-grade end products for reuse in lithium-ion production or other applications.

Li-Cycle will also benefit from Koch’s support for execution, operational readiness and supply procurement, as it gears up for the 2023 launch of its North American Hub facility in Rochester, New York.

“KSP’s strategic investment in Li-Cycle will further fund and accelerate our growth as we scale our efficient and proven commercial lithium-ion recycling technology globally to grow in lockstep with our customers,” said Li-Cycle co-founder and CEO Ajay Kochhar.

“KSP has made significant investments in the energy transformation and the electrification of transportation, and we’re proud to partner with their team to leverage their expertise and this capital to continue to execute our global growth plan.”

"Want to be featured here or have news to share? Write to info[at]saurenergy.com

Soumya Duggal

Soumya is a master's degree holder in English, with a passion for writing. It's an interest she has directed towards environmental writing recently, with a special emphasis on the progress being made in renewable energy.