Funding in place for lithium ion battery gigafactory

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ENDICOTT, NY – Exciting news out of Endicott as a former IBM factory building is poised to be at the forefront of high-tech battery manufacturing using technology developed in Greater Binghamton.

NewsChannel 34’s Jackie Gillis joins us in the studio now with more on the company that was mentored by Nobel Prize winner Stan Whittingham.

Imperium 3 New York announced yesterday that it has the money it needs to begin production of high-grade lithium ion battery cells at the Huron Campus 12 months from now.

Researcher Shailesh Upreti held a news conference at the Koffman Incubator in Binghamton, joined over Zoom by Binghamton University professor Whittingham, investors and other company executives.

Upreti founded C-4-V, which developed the lithium-ion technology that has been licensed to Imperium 3 to make the battery cell building blocks that can be used to power electric vehicles, buildings and other industrial uses.

The private investment firm Riverstone is leading a group of investors committing 85 million dollars to the project, enough to begin purchasing raw materials, retrofitting the facility and hiring up to 150 workers.

Paul Stratton is the Senior Vice President for Sales and Marketing.

“We are open for business. We’ve been talking to a lot of people, we’ve had a lot of discussion with customers and now we can finally say that we’re funded, that we’re moving forward. We will be producing product that will be available for delivery in 2022 and 2023. And looking to do nothing but grow from there,” says Stratton.

Upreti says Imperium 3 already has 450 million dollars worth of contracts for the battery cells and has already acquired 230 million dollars worth of equipment to produce them.

Upreti worked with Whittingham in his lab at BU.

Whittingham won the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for inventing the lithium-ion battery.

He says this project marks the first time that lithium-ion technology, which was developed in the U-S and Great Britain, is being commercialized in the States.

“I’m very proud of Shailesh for pulling this off. I’ve worked with Shailesh for more than 10 years now. I think this is a great thing for Endicott, a great thing for Broome County, for New York State and the country,” says Whittingham.

Imperium 3 says the patented technology will produce batteries that are higher capacity, safer and lower cost than its competitors.

Work to set up what’s being called a gigafactory begins soon with a goal of starting production of over 1 gigawatt-hour of lithium-ion battery cells per year by this time next year.

Imperium 3 has some lofty goals of expanding eventually to produce 32 gigawatt-hours of capacity over 8 years, employing 25 hundred people and establishing supply chain partners in Greater Binghamton.

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