Oorja, developer of methanol fuel cells in the power range from 1 kW to 20 kW, announced the close of a Series E investment round. (Earlier post.) New investor Mingxin China Growth Fund joined previous backers including DAG Ventures in the oversubscribed round.
The global fuel cell industry surpassed $1 billion in revenue in 2012, growing from $847.5 million in 2011 to $1.3 billion in 2012, according to a 2013 report by Navigant Research. The OorjaPac DMFC system is already in use by some of the world’s largest materials handling and telecommunications companies. The investment round follows a $4.2-million purchase order and distribution agreement in Latin America and other recent milestones including:
A strategic partnership for commercialization and distribution of methanol fuel cells in South Africa with HySA/Catalysis;
A research agreement with Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to develop fuel cells for electric vehicles, with a focus on Membrane-Electrode Assembly (MEA) development; and
Customer deployments with the company’s long-standing Fortune 50 customers in material handling.
The new funding round will support Oorja’s continued success supplying the OorjaPac to the material handling business. It will also jumpstart Oorja’s expansion into the telecommunications industry for network towers and growth of the company’s global distribution network.
Customers in the materials handling industry use the OorjaPac as an on-board battery charger for a wide variety of Class 3 vehicles. The OorjaPac keeps the vehicle’s battery at a constant state of charge, eliminating the need for battery swapping and rapid charging. The self-contained, compact OorjaPac requires minimal retrofitting and provides an attractive payback for the Telecommunications market by ensuring uninterrupted power supply and, in some cases, replacing less efficient and high-emissions diesel generators.