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PRESS RELEASE: Beringea Invests in Advanced Battery Developer Sakti3

April 1, 2010

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich. – Beringea, Michigan’s largest venture capital firm, has invested in Sakti3, Inc., an Ann Arbor-based developer of next-generation lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and portable electronics. The capital was part of Sakti3’s $7 million Series B financing round, led by Beringea and shared with existing investor, Khosla Ventures.

“These funds will enable us to continue to develop our technology and manufacturing capabilities,” said Dr. Ann Marie Sastry, CEO of Sakti3. “We are scaling and continuing to build our team from our base in Michigan.”

The investment from Beringea was made through the InvestMichigan! Growth Capital Fund, a $175 million fund that provides venture and expansion-stage capital to promising emerging businesses in Michigan.

“Sakti3 presents a fantastic Michigan story: some of the most innovative technology and talent from the University of Michigan has built a business to speed electrification of vehicles,” said Jeff Bocan, managing director at Beringea. “Sakti3 helps position Michigan as a leader of the next phase of growth in the automotive market — an industry still critical to Michigan’s future.

“The current generation of advanced batteries in early electric vehicles is burdened with physical, performance and economic restrictions that make mass market adoption of hybrid and full electric vehicles unlikely. Sakti3’s next-generation batteries have the potential to leap frog today’s technology and make the dream of an electrified vehicle future a reality.”

“We’re pleased to see Sakti3’s progress and growth,” says Vinod Khosla, founder and principal at Khosla Ventures. “It’s the kind of play we like — one that uses advanced computational science and manufacturing to produce a potentially disruptive technology. We strongly believe that the solution to clean energy is technical innovation, which is why we supported Sakti3.”

Sakti3 was awarded a $3 million grant from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) in 2009 and has been designated as a State of Michigan Center of Energy Excellence (CoEE) in partnership with the University of Michigan.

“We aggressively worked to keep Sakti3 here because this high-tech innovator is a key player in Michigan’s growing advanced battery industry,” said Governor Jennifer M. Granholm. “As a Michigan Center of Energy Excellence partnered with the University of Michigan, Sakti3 clearly demonstrates the great value that comes when private business, universities and government work together.”

About Sakti3

Sakti3 is commercializing high performance solid state batteries that are produced using a novel manufacturing process that has been developed by the company. Sakti3 was founded in 2007 as a spin-out of the University of Michigan and has been supported to date by Khosla Ventures and the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. For more information on Sakti3., Inc, please contact Trakia Bennett at info@sakti3.com.

About Beringea

Beringea, LLC provides equity and/or mezzanine debt to small- and-middle market companies. The Firm, which includes Michigan-based Beringea, LLC and its London, UK office Beringea LLP, invests in portfolio companies operating in a range of sectors, including health care, clean technology, manufacturing, media, Internet technologies and specialized consumer products.

With flexible capital solutions, extensive investing experience and offices in the U.S. and UK, Beringea’s team offers its portfolio companies the resources to grow their businesses and create value for shareholders. For more information, visit www.beringea.com.

In the United States of America, Beringea operates as an SEC-registered investment advisor, Beringea, LLC. In the United Kingdom, this document is issued by Beringea LLP, a firm authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Beringea LLP is a limited liability partnership registered in England and Wales with company number OC342919, and its registered office is at 39 Earlham Street, London, WC2H 9LT, UK. This document is intended solely to provide information regarding Beringea’s potential financing capabilities for prospective portfolio companies.

About Khosla Ventures

Khosla Ventures offers venture assistance, strategic advice and capital to entrepreneurs. The firm helps entrepreneurs extend the potential of their ideas in breakthrough scientific work in clean technology areas such as solar, battery, high efficiency engines, lighting, greener materials like cement, glass and bio-refineries for energy and bioplastics, and other environmentally friendly technologies as well as traditional venture areas like the Internet, computing, mobile and silicon technology arenas. Vinod Khosla founded the firm in 2004 and was formerly a General Partner at Kleiner Perkins and founder of Sun Microsystems. Khosla Ventures is based in Menlo Park, California. For more information visit www.khoslaventures.com.

About The Michigan Economic Development Corporation

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation, a partnership between the state and local communities, promotes smart economic growth by developing strategies and providing services to create and retain good jobs and a high quality of life. For more information on the MEDC’s initiatives and programs, visit the Web site at www.themedc.org.

 

Media Contact

Andi Wilmes
Beringea
Phone: 248.489.9000
Email: awilmes@beringea.com

 

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