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Exclusive: Singapore battery startup nets $4.1M from Petronas to build in Oklahoma

Green Li-ion's modular battery recycling system. Photo: Courtesy of Green Li-ion.

A Singapore battery-recycling startup, Green Li-ion, has secured funding from the VC arm of Malaysian oil company Petronas, the company tells Axios exclusively, a round that will help build out an Oklahoma factory.

Driving the news: Green Li-ion, founded in 2020, just closed $4.1 million from Twin Towers Ventures, the venture capital arm of Petronas.

  • Green Li-ion also plans to raise a Series B round of $50 million to $80 million in the first quarter of next year, says CEO and co-founder Leon Farrant.
  • The funding rounds will partly go toward building out a facility in Oklahoma that will showcase its battery-recycling technologies, which include turning waste battery scrap or used batteries into cathode battery materials.
  • The company raised $20.5 million in March.

Zoom in: Green Li-ion uses a hydrometallurgy process, which uses a liquid solution to extract metals from the battery waste.

  • The company sells its modular battery-recycling tech to companies that are already working with recycled batteries and/or have waste streams, like big battery makers, recyclers and processors.

Big picture: The Biden administration has used the Inflation Reduction Act and the Infrastructure Bill to supercharge a domestic battery-manufacturing and recycling supply chain and is supporting recycling companies like Redwood Materials and Ascend Elements.

  • Private funding is now following the signal of government support.
  • Recycled battery materials will play a key role in the ecosystem as the supply of new materials like lithium are dominated by global players like China. The U.S. only has a tiny piece of the new battery-materials production market.
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