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Posted: August 27, 2009
Lithium-Ion Battery Manufacturer Ener1 Takes Stake in Electric Vehicle Maker Think Global
(Nanowerk News) Ener1, Inc. will take the lead among a group of investors that plans to inject $47 million of equity funding into Think Global AS, the Norwegian electric vehicle producer. Ener1, Inc. is the parent company of EnerDel, a leading manufacturer of advanced lithium-ion automotive battery systems based in Indianapolis and an existing supplier to Think.
Ener1, Inc. has agreed to invest approximately $18 million in three tranches, and convert an additional $3.0 million in debt for convertible preferred shares of Think, effectively transferring the 10% equity stake held by Ener1 Group to Ener1, Inc. Once all stages are complete, Ener1, Inc. will hold approximately a 31-percent stake in the company. Other stakeholders in the deal include Investinor, the Norwegian sovereign investment company.
"Automakers need made-to-order performance combined with the pricing and availability of an off-the-shelf system," said Ener1 Chairman and CEO Charles Gassenheimer. "Ener1 and Think have collaborated for years on systems development, and today possess a unique ability to bring together category-leading technologies in a fully integrated platform, to suit a wide variety of vehicle applications."
EnerDel and Think have also agreed to enter into a new long-term battery supply agreement as part of the transaction. EnerDel will receive certain exclusivity rights for the supply of batteries for Think's current and upcoming new vehicle models.
"Ener1 is very pleased to have the opportunity to lead this round of investment in the manufacturer of the first road-ready electric vehicle on the world market," added Ener1 Chairman and CEO Charles Gassenheimer. "As a key battery supplier and now partner in the production and marketing of electric drivetrain solutions for a range of next-generation vehicles, Ener1 looks forward to a strong future relationship with this industry leader."
"This investment cements our partnership with one of the leading advanced battery manufacturers in the world," said Think CEO Richard Canny. "In addition to ensuring supply of high-performance battery systems, the new deal will enable us to more fully capitalize on our advantage in the marketplace with the only 'plug-and-play' electric vehicle drive system with prismatic lithium-ion technology."
About Ener1, Inc.
Ener1 develops and manufactures compact, high performance lithium-ion batteries to power the next generation of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and pure electric vehicles. The publicly traded company is led by an experienced team of engineers and energy system experts at its EnerDel subsidiary located in Indiana. In addition to the automobile market, applications for Ener1 lithium-ion battery technology include the military, grid storage and other growing markets.
Ener1 also develops commercial fuel cell products through its EnerFuel subsidiary and nanotechnology-based materials and manufacturing processes for batteries and other applications through its NanoEner subsidiary.
Think is a pioneer in electric vehicles, and a leader in electric vehicle technology, developed and proven over 19 years. It is one of the few companies that has a 'ready-to-market' fully electric vehicle - the TH!NK City. With its market-leading range, driveability and recyclability, the TH!NK City is the first vehicle of its type to be granted pan-European regulatory safety approval and CE certification.
Think is also a leader in electric drive-system technology, and was the first to market a 'plug and play' mobility solution in the business-to-business sector. With its Scandinavian origins and sustainability mindset, Think is one of the most carbon efficient car companies in the world.