© scanrail dreamstime.com General | January 29, 2020
Battery start-up Advano secures Series A funding
Re-chargeable battery startup Advano has closed a USD 18.5 million Series A funding round co-led by Japan-based global battery materials supplier Mitsui Kinzoku SBI Material Innovation Fund, Tony Fadell's Future Shape, and PeopleFund.
Other investors participating in the round include Peter Thiel's, Thiel Capital, DCVC, and Y Combinator, among others. Founded by chemical engineer and CEO Alexander Girau, New Orleans-based Advano has also unveiled a strategic partnership with Mitsui Kinzoku, giving it access to distribution channels across multiple industries. John S. Foster, Ph.D., of Owl Biomedical Inc. and Innovative Micro Technology, has been appointed as president and COO of Advano. Tony Fadell, inventor of the iPod, as well as a member from Mitsui Kinzoku SBI Material Innovation Fund have joined as observers on the company's board of directors. Advano upcycles silicon waste from semiconductor or solar panel manufacturing to create a finely engineered, scalable silicon solution that increases the energy density of li-ion batteries. The upcycling process avoids the silicon manufacturing process entirely, which carries benefits for both the environment and engineers. At the core of Advano’s technology is silicon, which can store 10x more energy than standard battery re-chargeable li-ion battery anodes material graphite, which means less material per battery, potentially decreasing battery cost and size. In a press release announcing the funding and partnership, Girau said, "The greatest problem of our world is climate change, and Advano is helping to solve it by making energy more sustainable, cleaner, and cheaper through our silicon-based batteries. To fix the problem however, the solution must scale. From day one of Advano's existence, scale has been the first criterion of every decision we have made." Mitsui Kinzoku - SBI Material Innovation Fund said, "Advano has a timely and pragmatic approach to building better battery material at scale. Mitsui is proud to partner with Advano and looks forward to helping introduce its products to a variety of large consumer and industrial sectors."