In May 2022, Amprius announced that they would list on the NYSE through a SPAC (special purpose acquisition corporation) merger with Kensington Capital, in a deal which is expected to raise approximately US$430M (US$230M through equity finance). The merger would value Amprius Technologies at US$939M. The proceeds will be used to expand Amprius’ manufacturing capacity to meet growing demand for their silicon nanowire Li-ion cells.
In a briefing with the company, Amprius noted that since H2 2021, they have entered into considerably more customer engagements, stating they are now involved in 30+ customer engagements. Due to this level of interest, the company decided to go public to raise the capital needed to increase production capacity. Amprius are planning to build a 500 MWh facility within the next two years before expanding further. Construction sites are being scouted in Georgia and Texas. Currently, Amprius are only able to produce kWh levels of cells annually, capacity which is fully booked for the next year. The company have been selling products since 2018 and in February 2022 Amprius announced that they had shipped commercial cells with an energy density of 450 Wh/kg and 1150 Wh/l to a leading manufacturer of high-altitude pseudo-satellites. This is likely to be the highest energy density Li-ion cell to have been sold commercially.
The choice of Kensington Partners for the SPAC deal was motivated by their history and prior success in leading the IPOs for solid-state battery developer, Quantumscape, and EV charging solutions provider, Wallbox. Though the market for SPACs has cooled somewhat over the past year, Amprius may still have to navigate a general negative sentiment toward SPAC deals and even clean energy start-ups going public more generally. However, their history of selling and having cells operated commercially should provide them with an advantage over some battery technology start-ups, where products have been comparatively untested prior to a SPAC deal or IPO. Certainly, this development adds further impetus behind the commercialisation of high-silicon anodes for Li-ion batteries.
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Dr Alex Holland, Senior Analyst
Dr Alex Holland is a Senior Technology Analyst within the Energy Storage team at market research company IDTechEx. His activities include technology benchmarking, supply chain analysis and developing market forecasts, authoring, and contributing to various reports on lithium-ion batteries, electric vehicles, and future energy storage technologies.
Prior to joining IDTechEx in 2019, Alex completed his PhD in electrochemical engineering from the University of Southampton and worked as an analyst at a renewable energy supplier.