SK Materials, Presidio Ventures and BMW i Ventures were among the investors that helped the lithium mining process developer complete its series B round.
US-based lithium extraction technology developer Lilac Solutions reached a final close of its $150m series B round yesterday featuring industrial gas producer SK Materials and conglomerate Sumitomo Corporation.
BMW i Ventures, the venture capital firm formed by automotive manufacturer BMW, also took part in the round, as did MCJ Collective and Earthshot Ventures, while Sumitomo was represented by its Presidio Ventures unit.
The round was first disclosed last month with the same figure and was co-led by Lowercarbon Capital and accounts advised by T Rowe Price. It included commodity trading firm Mercuria Energy Trading, The Engine, Valor Equity Partners and Breakthrough Energy Ventures.
Founded in 2016, Lilac has created ion exchange technology that helps ramp up lithium mining from brine sources as an alternative to the conventional production methods, the latter of which have a lower yield and a more negative impact on the environment.
The cash will be used to increase production of the company’s ion exchange beads and hire engineers and field operators as it looks to expand its presence globally.
The Engine had taken part in a $20m series A round for Lilac in February 2020 that was led by Breakthrough Energy Ventures and backed by Lowercarbon Capital and Grantham Foundation.
The company’s $2.5m pre-series A round was co-led by Prime Impact Fund and Tribeca Early Stage Partners in 2019 and came after $800,000 in seed funding the year before from unnamed VC firms and angel investors.
Presidio Ventures chief executive Doug Kuribayashi, said: “We believe that the Sumitomo Corporation’s expertise and long experience in the management and operations of mining businesses, and our global network in trading raw materials for battery production, will add value enhancement of Lilac Solutions in the future.”