Primus Power said it received $20 million in the first close of a Series C funding that includes strategic investor Anglo American Platinum of South Africa. The Hayward, Calif.-based company has now raised $35 million since mid-2009 and has been awarded $20 million in government grants from agencies, including the Department of Energy. The company said existing investors participated in the new round without naming them. Existing investors include Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital, DBL Investors and 12BF Global Ventures, according to data from Thomson Reuters, publisher of peHUB. Primus expects to begin commercial shipment of its zinc-based flow battery to utility and other customers this year.
PRIMUS POWER SECURES $20 MILLION IN FIRST CLOSE OF SERIES C FUNDING
Includes substantial investment by South Africa’s Anglo American Platinum; Supports first product shipments for energy-storage technology pioneer
HAYWARD, Calif., Feb. 4, 2014 — Primus Power, a leader in grid-scale electrical energy storage, announced today that it has secured $20 million in the first close of its Series C financing. South Africa-based resource developer, Anglo American Platinum Limited (Anglo American Platinum), the world’s leading primary producer of platinum group metals (PGMs), led the round with a major contribution from its PGM Development Fund. Primus has pioneered a new class of safe, low-cost, grid-scale electrical energy-storage solutions. The Company’s zinc-based flow battery systems decouple instantaneous electricity demand from supply, bolstering the stability and security of the electric grid, and helping accelerate the penetration of wind and solar energy with superior economics compared to conventional solutions.
Primus has now raised $35 million in equity funding since its founding in mid-2009. The Company has also received strategic government grants totaling $20 million from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy (ARPA-E), the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), and the California Energy Commission (CEC).
Richard Willis of the PGM Development Fund joins Primus’ Board of Directors. Existing investors also participated alongside PGM Development Fund. The new money supports 2014 customer shipments, transitioning the Company’s manufacturing to a contract manufacturer, and expanding its sales and customer support organizations.
The timing is excellent. Commercialization of Primus’ EnergyPod® containerized storage arrays is already underway. In the next year Primus will ship systems to investor-owned utilities, municipal utilities and microgrids at military bases. These shipments are an indicator of the increasing global demand for grid-scale energy storage, which is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of greater than 30% before 2020*. At that point, the worldwide market size is estimated at $21.9 billion*. Momentum is especially strong in California, thanks in part to a recent mandate by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) that requires investor-owned utilities to procure 1,325 MW of energy storage by 2020.
Andrew Hinkly, Anglo American Platinum’s Executive Head of Marketing, called Primus Power’s solutions a game changer. “The EnergyPod® is a safe, low cost, power dense and ultra-reliable energy storage solution that installs rapidly. It is a differentiated product for mass deployment that integrates thoughtful design and utility-grade construction into a product that adds value at numerous locations along the electrical grid. This is a strategic investment for Anglo American Platinum. It is both good for business and for the environment.”
“Anglo American Platinum’s support is a welcome endorsement of our strategy, products and team,” said Primus Power’s CEO, Tom Stepien. “Beyond the investment, Anglo American Platinum is a valued partner and, as Primus expands internationally, they will provide a beachhead on the African continent. The new funds from Anglo American Platinum and other investors will help us accelerate our customer deliveries, grow our internal team and expand our product offerings.”
*Source: Navigant Research
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About Anglo American Platinum
Anglo American Platinum Limited is a member of the Anglo American plc Group and is the world’s leading primary producer of platinum group metals. The company is listed on the Johannesburg Securities Exchange (JSE). Its mining, smelting and refining operations are based in South Africa. Elsewhere in the world, the Group owns Unki Platinum Mine in Zimbabwe and is actively exploring in Brazil. Anglo American Platinum has a number of joint ventures with several historically disadvantaged South African consortia as part of its commitment to the transformation of the mining industry. Anglo American Platinum is committed to the highest standards of safety and continues to make meaningful and sustainable difference in the development of the communities around its operations. www.angloplatinum.com
About PGM Development Fund
The PGM Development Fund is a private equity fund established to provide capital for further PGM market development and beneficiation particularly in Southern Africa. It is an Anglo American Platinum initiative managed by Douglas Investments and advised by Bryanston Resources. www.pgmdevelopmentfund.co.za
About Primus Power
Primus Power is a leader in low-cost, grid-scale energy storage solutions with a scalable, distributed, multi- hour system that economically serves multiple storage applications. With 14 patented innovations in chemistry, cell design and system engineering, the Company’s EnergyPod® products offer exceptional power density,reliabilityandportabilityatindustry-lowprices.www.primuspower.com FollowPrimuson Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.