Mercia Technologies PLC
(“Mercia”, “the Company” or “the Group”)
Mercia Technologies PLC (AIM: MERC), a national investment group focused on the creation, funding and scaling of innovative technology businesses with high growth potential from the UK regions, is pleased to announce a new direct investment of up to £1.9million in Faradion Limited (“Faradion”), a company focused on the development and commercialisation of advanced, low-cost battery materials. Mercia’s investment is part of a syndicated investment round of up to £3.2million alongside existing shareholders which include Finance Yorkshire Seedcorn Fund and industry partner, Haldor Topsoe A/S, a leading producer of heterogeneous catalysts focused on optimising natural resources and energy efficiency. Faradion has been identified by Mercia as an ‘Emerging Star’ from Enterprise Ventures’ (“EV”) managed funds portfolio. EV was acquired by Mercia in March 2016 and Faradion is now the third new Emerging Star to have emanated from these funds.
Mercia has invested an initial tranche of £1.3million which represents an equity holding of 13.6%. Dependent on the completion of specific performance related milestones, a second tranche of £600,000 will be invested within the next 18 months. The current investment round will be used to commercialise Faradion’s lead product, a novel, low-cost sodium-ion battery technology from which Mercia believes significant value will be derived over time.
Established in 2010 and based in Sheffield, Faradion already has a number of patent families granted or pending and Mercia believes that the technology offers comparable or superior performance to lithium-ion batteries, improved safety and is approximately 25% cheaper to manufacture (due to the ready availability of sodium) than existing alternatives. By bringing lower-cost, sodium-ion technologies to market, Faradion is accelerating the introduction of emerging applications such as home storage (on and off-grid) and electric vehicles (or E-mobility).
Francis Massin, Chief Executive Officer of Faradion, commented:
“This new investment by Mercia comes at a particularly crucial stage for Faradion as we look to move from the laboratory to large scale prototype production.”
“The benefits of sodium-ion battery technology have already been established in a laboratory setting; however this financial support will allow us to demonstrate that the technology can be manufactured at scale. We look forward to developing our new partnership with Mercia, which has shown great confidence in our technology.”
Mark Payton, Chief Executive Officer of Mercia Technologies, said:
“We are delighted to make our first direct investment into Faradion, adding another exciting technology company to Mercia’s portfolio of Emerging Stars. Faradion is the third company to have been sourced by the excellent team at Enterprise Ventures and added to the Group’s direct investment portfolio, once again demonstrating the potential of disruptive technology businesses, sourced from the UK regions. It is another example of Mercia supporting truly innovative UK businesses, from early development through our managed funds, followed by the deployment of direct capital to scale the commercial potential of the investee company.”
About Mercia Technologies PLC
Mercia is a national investment group focused on the creation, funding and scaling of innovative businesses with high growth potential from the UK regions. Mercia benefits from 18 university partnerships and six offices across the Midlands, the North of England and Scotland providing it with access to high quality, regional deal flow. Mercia Technologies PLC is quoted on AIM with the epic “MERC”.
Mercia’s ‘Complete Capital Solution’ initially nurtures businesses via its third party funds (with more than £228.0million under management) and then over time Mercia can provide further funding to its ‘Emerging Stars’ by deploying direct investment follow-on capital from its own balance sheet.
Since its IPO in December 2014, the Company has invested over £30.0million directly across its portfolio of ‘Emerging Stars’.