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Li-ion maker Boston-Power adds $30M in funding; China expansion

Boston-Power, Inc. announced $30 million in new private equity. The funding was led by existing investor GSR Ventures. Long-standing Boston-Power investors Oak Investment Partners and Foundation Asset Management (FAM) also participated.

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The investment follows Boston-Power’s September 2011 announcement of $125 million in growth capital and Chinese government stimulus programs (earlier post)—comprising a combination of grants, low-interest loans and related financial and tax incentives&madsh;and is being used to scale manufacturing, research and development, and business development activities in China for the company’s technology and products.

Boston-Power recently broke ground on its new manufacturing site in Liyang. Located in the Shanghai Corridor and scheduled for completion by the end of 2012, the facility will be capable of producing 400 MWh of lithium-ion battery cells annually. Concurrently, Boston-Power is establishing an R&D and EV battery engineering facility in Beijing.

Augmenting those capabilities, Boston-Power’s Westborough, Massachusetts-based team maintains responsibility for intellectual property development, research and development, global customer support, sales and business development and partnerships with advanced research organizations in the Boston area.

GSR Ventures is an early-stage venture capital firm focused on building world-class technology companies in China. The firm invests primarily in the Internet, wireless, green technology, and semiconductor sectors. Founded in 2004, GSR has more than 50 companies in its portfolio and more than US$1 billion under management.

Comments

HarveyD

Sharing end product responsibilities, R&D in USA/EU/Japan and lower cost mass production in China or India has worked favorably for many firms in the last 20 years or so. It should be a profitable arrangement for Boston-Power and other Li=On manufacturers. That way, the cost of future EV batteries should drop from $350/Kwh to $100 Kwh within about 10 years or so. Fierce competition will also force performance to increase from 200 Wh/Kg to over 600 Wh/Kg in the about same time frame. When those two goals are met, the world will have affordable extended range BEVs.

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