Canada-based Lithion Recycling closed a first tranche of Series A equity with a strategic group of investors led by IMM Investment Global Limited and supported by Fondaction and its managed fund, the LCC Fund. The size of the first round is expected to reach up to C$125 million (US$99 million). IMM Global will join the company’s Board of directors as a result of the significant investment.
With this new capital, Lithion moves forward with three pivotal parts of its industrialization plan which are the construction and commissioning of its first commercial mechanical separation plant (“Spoke”) in Québec; the construction and opening of a state-of-the-art Technology Development Center (TDC) to continuously develop Lithion’s technology for future battery chemistries and battery materials specifications; and the completion of detailed engineering studies in advance of the near-term start of construction of Lithion’s Québec-based hydrometallurgy plant (“Hub”).
With the funding, Lithion enters the commercial phase of its development and will continue to close the loop on battery materials with the full support of its investors and partners. The 7,500 metric tons per year capacity Spoke and the TDC will create close to 100 jobs in Québec and will support the global deployment of Lithion’s technology through licensing agreements.
Lithion has developed an efficient and cost-effective process to recover strategic materials from end-of-life and product waste of lithium-ion batteries. After a mechanical separation step (plastic/metals), hydrometallurgical processes are used to purify the various metals contained in the cathode.
These processes include a lixiviation step that dissolves metallic oxides in an aqueous solution, as well as several precipitation and separation steps to obtain high-purity components.
Lithion’s process allows up to 95% of battery components to be recovered and treated so that they can be reused by battery manufacturers, enabling to close the lifecycle in batteries.
This year, Lithion launches its first commercial recycling operations, drawing on data from a highly successful Québec industrial-scale demonstration plant commissioned in January 2020. Its goal is worldwide deployment, through licensing agreements, with a target of 25 recycling plants on a world scale by 2035.