India’s Reliance to buy UK’s Faradion for $134.99 million

by Jonathan Adams
Reliance

Based out of Sheffield and Oxford in the UK and with its patented sodium-ion battery technology, Faradion is one of the leading global battery technology companies

Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) on Friday announced the buyout of British battery maker Faradion Ltd for an enterprise value of £100 million ($134.99 million), as the oil-to-retail conglomerate continued with the acquisition of end-to-end technology for its multi-billion-dollar clean energy portfolio.

Reliance New Energy Solar Ltd (RNESL), a unit of the nation’s most valuable company, signed definitive agreements to acquire 100 per cent shareholding in Faradion for an enterprise value of £100 million ($134.99 million) and will invest an additional £25 million ($33.75 million) as growth capital to accelerate the commercial roll-out, the company said in a statement.

Based out of Sheffield and Oxford in the UK and with its patented sodium-ion battery technology, Faradion is one of the leading global battery technology companies. It has a competitively superior, strategic, wide-reaching and extensive IP portfolio, covering several aspects of sodium-ion technology.

Since October 10, India’s most valuable company through RNESL has made a wave of acquisitions and strategic investments to give shape to its green energy business that spans solar, battery and hydrogen investments. The direction largely has been towards acquiring or gaining access to cutting-edge technology that can reduce the cost of renewable energy production, especially in solar energy generation.

It has put $1.2 billion in partnerships with REC, NexWafe, Sterling and Wilson, Stiesal and Ambri to acquire the expertise and technology portfolio to start to build a fully integrated end-to-end renewables energy ecosystem through solar, batteries and hydrogen. And in that series, it has now invested in the British battery maker.

Faradion’s sodium-ion technology provides significant advantages compared to alternative battery technologies, especially lithium-ion and lead-acid, the statement said.

These advantages include no dependence and use of cobalt, lithium, copper or graphite. Sodium is the sixth most abundant element on the planet.

All of this combines to offer a next-generation, high density, safe, sustainable and low-cost energy storage technology solution, it said.

Reliance will use Faradion’s state-of-the-art technology at its proposed fully integrated energy storage giga-factory as part of the Dhirubhai Ambani Green Energy Giga Complex project at Jamnagar, India, it said.

Speaking about the acquisition, Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Industries, said the acquisition will further strengthen and build upon the firm’s ambition to create one of the most advanced and integrated new energy ecosystems and put India at the forefront of leading battery technologies.

The sodium-ion technology developed by Faradion provides a globally leading energy storage and battery solution, which is safe, sustainable, provides high energy density and is significantly cost-competitive. In addition, it has wide use applications from mobility to grid-scale storage and back-up power, he said.

Most importantly, it utilises sodium, which will secure India’s energy storage requirements for its large renewable energy and fast-growing EV charging market, he said.

Ambani said Reliance will work with Faradion management and accelerate its plans to commercialise the technology through building integrated and end-to-end Giga scale manufacturing in India.

James Quinn, CEO of Faradion, also commented: Faradion has been one of the first to champion sodium-ion battery technology. Reliance is the perfect partner for supporting Faradion’s growth in the rapidly expanding Indian market and to jointly speed up the transformation of the global energy market.

Chris Wright, Chairman and Co-Founder, Faradion, said: Dr Jerry Barker, Ashwin Kumaraswamy and I founded Faradion in 2010 to develop sodium-ion technology and bring it to market, with funds from Mercia Asset Management. This deal with Reliance firmly establishes Faradion’s sodium-ion batteries as an integral part of the global value chain for cheaper, cleaner, more sustainable energy for decades to come.



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