Michigan-based Our Next Energy, which is currently engaged in developing an advanced battery for electric vehicles, has managed to successfully raise USD 25 million from various investors. The interested investors in the young company include the famous German automaker BMW and, quite surprisingly, a firm dedicated to clean technology headed by Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates.
However, this is not the first time that Gates has made an investment in this field of electric cars. His Breakthrough Energy, founded in 2015, had also invested in Redwood Materials, a battery recycling company, and electric aircraft manufacturer ZeroAvia.
Other investors in ONE’s Series A round include Detroit-based Assembly Ventures, Chicago-based Volta Energy Technologies, and Flex Ltd., Singapore-based and a strategic partner with ONE. The investing round was led by Breakthrough Energy Ventures.
One is a year-old startup and it is currently working on a dual battery that will combine a structural cell-to-pack design using cobalt and nickel-free cathodes. On the other hand, the second set of batteries can double the vehicle’s mileage to up to 750 miles. ONE founder and chief executive Mujeeb Ijaz said, “We wanted to surround ourselves with people who are in this for the long term.
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They can help our company grow and are magnets for other technology.” He further mentioned, “We plan to go from raw materials all the way to (battery) cell manufacturing,” and that they will seek more funds so that the company can expand its manufacturing scale.
Very recently, before the investment in ONE, Bill Gates’s Breakthrough Energy Ventures had made a massive investment of a $53 million Series C investment round in Iron Ox which gained popularity as a leading agricultural robot company. The Breakthrough Energy Ventures is mainly a climate fund interested in investing in various organizations.