Reliance New Energy Solar Limited (RNESL), the green energy arm of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), has signed an agreement with sodium-ion battery technology provider Faradion Limited to acquire a 100% stake for £94.42 million (~$127.42 million). Faradion has an enterprise value of around £100 million (~$134.96 million).
The UK-based sodium-ion battery technology company has extensive IP portfolios covering several aspects of sodium-ion technology. It had a turnover of £197,561 (~$266,683) in 2020. In 2020, Faradion had announced a partnership with Infraprime Logistics Technologies to provide batteries for commercial vehicles in the Indian electric vehicle market.
RNESL will acquire 88.92% of Faradion’s shares for £83.97 million (~$113.32 million) at closing expected in early January 2022. The remaining 11.08% shares will be acquired within three years for around £10.45 million (~$14.10 million).
RNESL will also subscribe to Faradion’s new equity shares for £31.59 million (~$42.63 million). Of this, £25 million (~$33.74 million) will be used to accelerate the commercial rollout and the balance for debt repayment and other fees.
Reliance will use Faradion’s state-of-the-art technology at its proposed fully integrated energy storage giga-factory at Dhirubhai Ambani Green Energy Giga Complex Project in Jamnagar, Gujarat.
The sodium-ion battery technology does not utilize cobalt, lithium, copper, or graphite and has an energy density par with lithium-ion phosphate. The battery also has a wider operating temperature range of -30℃ to +60℃. The manufacturer can utilize existing lithium-ion manufacturing infrastructure to produce sodium-ion batteries, which has low-cost compared to lead-acid batteries.
Commenting on the acquisition, Mukesh Ambani, Chairman of RIL, said, “We will work with Faradion management to accelerate its plans to commercialize the technology by building integrated and end-to-end Giga scale manufacturing in India. “
Faradion’s acquisition comes after Reliance’s recent investment and acquisitions in the renewable energy sector. In October 2021, RNESL signed an agreement with Shapoorji Pallonji and Company to acquire a 40% stake in Sterling and Wilson Solar through a combination of primary investment, a secondary purchase, and an open offer.
During the same month, RNESL acquired REC Solar Holdings, a Norway-headquartered solar cell, modules, and polysilicon manufacturing company, from China National Bluestar Group for $771 million. It also said that it would invest €25 million (~$29 million) in NexWafe, a Germany-based solar wafer manufacturer.
Earlier this year, Reliance announced that it would invest ₹750 billion (~$10 billion) to build an integrated solar photovoltaic factory, advanced energy storage battery manufacturing unit, green hydrogen, and fuel cell facility in Gujarat’s Jamnagar.
According to Mercom Capital Group’s 9M and Q3 Funding and M&A Report for Storage, Grid, and Efficiency, the sector witnessed 15 battery storage merger and acquisition transactions in 9M 2021 compared to 11 transactions in the same period last year.