Battery gigafactory hopeful Magnis Energy enters trading halt ahead of capital raise | RenewEconomy

Battery gigafactory hopeful Magnis Energy enters trading halt ahead of capital raise

ASX-listed Magnis Energy enters a trading halt, pending an announcement on a capital raise that may accelerate the development of an Australian-based battery gigafactory.

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Artist rendering of proposed Townsville Gigafactory (source: Magnis Energy Technologies).

Shares in ASX-listed Magnis Energy Technologies were placed into a trading halt on Wednesday, in anticipation of a capital raising that is likely to fund the company’s plans to expand its Australian headquartered battery manufacturing facilities.

The latest capital raising comes off the back of a successful $1.5 million capital raising that Magnis undertook in June, and will look to expand its available funds, despite having recently terminated the appointment of its now former chief executive officer, Frank Houllis.

The company has yet to name a replacement for the CEO position and few details are currently available regarding the extent of the latest capital raising, with details on the latter expected to be announced on Friday.

Magnis is part of a consortium of companies, Imperium 3, led by Boston Energy and Innovation, Charge CCCV LLC and Magnis, which received $3.1 million in funding from the Queensland government to completed a feasibility study into a potential $3 billion battery giga-factory to be located in Townsville.

The company recently announced that the feasibility study was successful, and that it was now progressing discussions with potential equity partners about investments in the project. The company hopes to raise the necessary funds by mid-2021, with the commencement of commercial operations scheduled for the start of 2024.

The Townsville gigafactory is expected to generate 2,500 new jobs during the construction phase, with more than 1,000 ongoing jobs created in operations once the factory is up and running.

The company has also progressed plans for a battery production facility in New York, having completed detailed engineering works and facility design, as part of a pitch to at least three potential financiers which are considering backing the project.

Magnis intends to use the both the iM3 New York battery plant, and the plant planned for Townsville, to accelerate the commercialisation of an ‘extra fast charge battery’ that the company has helped to develop, which has the ability to attain more than 85 per cent charge in just six minutes.

Magnis believes the technology could be a ‘game changer’ for the electric vehicle industry, and is hoping to scale up the production capacity at both its New York and Townsville facilities to a gigawatt scale.

“Fast charging is usually synonymous with batteries degrading quickly. However today’s results using an unoptimised cell are exciting and will improve further as the cell is optimised. This news is highly encouraging for the global battery industry and for every EV manufacturer,” Magnis chairman Frank Poullas said upon the announcement of battery testing results in July.

“To be able to charge batteries within six minutes would be a game changer and it’s comforting to know that Magnis and [Charge CCCV] are at the forefront of this and other battery technologies.”

The company also has an interest in the Nachu Graphite Project in Tanzania, and is currently in negotiations with other battery manufacturers around the supply of graphite for use in battery production.

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