Simbol Mining Raises First Round

Simbol Mining, a developer of lithium extraction processes, has raised $6.7 million in Series A funding co-led by Mohr Davidow Ventures and Firelake Capital.



Simbol Mining, a company focused on the production of lithium and other commodity metals using clean, zero waste production processes from brines and effluent streams, today announced completion of its Series A round of investment. The $6.7 million financing was led by MDV-Mohr Davidow Ventures and Firelake Capital. The funds will be used to complete development of processes for lithium extraction.

Lithium is a metal that is used in a wide variety of applications, and most prominently in batteries, promising to be the key ingredient to batteries for electric vehicles. The lithium carbonate market was approximately $500M in 2007, and is forecasted to grow to at least $1.5B by 2015. Expected growth is attributed to growth in the use of Li-ion batteries for consumer electronics and electric vehicles.

“Simbol Mining promises to be the lowest cost producer of lithium in the world with the added and significant benefit of doing so with a cleaner, greener approach,” said MDV General Partner Josh Green who will take a board seat with the company. “The company leverages a strong technical team from Lawrence Livermore (LLNL) using proven separation technologies.”

The company was founded by Luka Erceg with a background in financial transactions for power production and energy technology, and Scott Conley a long-time process controls engineer with experience in large scale chemical processing technologies. The idea for Simbol Mining came about in late 2006 while Erceg and Conley were pursuing their MBAs part-time at Rice University. Erceg and Conley later enlisted as founders Drs. William Bourcier, Carol Bruton, and Brian Viani, leading geochemists formerly of the DOE's Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. The company was singled out in February 2008 by attendees of the Cleantech Network Forum XVI for having the Most Promising Technology.

“With the closure of this new financing we can complete development of the processes needed to produce lithium from brines and effluent streams, in an environmentally conscious manner,” added Simbol CEO Erceg. “Although lithium is our first metal, we see tremendous opportunity to apply our technologies to the extraction of other metals.”

About Simbol Mining

Simbol Mining Corp. is focused on the production of lithium and other commodity metals using clean, zero waste production processes from brines and effluent streams. Based on that proprietary cleantech process, the company aims to become the leading provider of lithium carbonate, a key component of batteries for electric vehicles and energy storage technology. For more information visit:

About MDV-Mohr Davidow Ventures

MDV has been a leading Silicon Valley venture capital firm for 25 years. The firm funds and mentors entrepreneurs, scientists and young companies involved in redefining business, technology and medicine. MDV invests around three major themes: Powering the Planet; Personalizing Medicine; and Driving the Digital World. The firm partners with entrepreneurs to transform the production, management and distribution of energy and resources through technology innovation. Category-leading companies funded by MDV include: Agile (ORCL); Brocade, Catilin; Energy Innovations; Genomatica; Gordon Murray Design; hi5; Nanosolar; ONI Systems (CIEN); OPX Biotechnologies; Pacific Biosciences; ParAllele (AFFX); and ZeaChem. MDV has $2 billion dollars under management. For more information visit

About Firelake Capital Management

Firelake Capital Management invests in early-stage venture companies focused on cleantech and renewable energy. Firelake seeks “edge technology” companies that have significant technological advances over the status quo. Founded early in 2002, Firelake has over $350 million under management and is located in downtown Palo Alto, California. For more information visit