Tech investor PPK takes control of lithium battery manufacturer PowerPlus Energy

Tech investor PPK takes control of lithium battery manufacturer PowerPlus Energy

Via PowerPlus Energy.

Technology incubation and commercialisation investor PPK Group (ASX: PPK) has taken majority ownership of lithium battery manufacturer PowerPlus Energy today after its shareholding in the entity rose to 51 per cent.

After announcing its plans to move to majority ownership of PowerPlus Energy in March by way of paying $1.8 million to acquire a 33 per cent interest, PPK has today completed its acquisition of equity in the company it claims to be ‘Australia’s largest privately-owned lithium battery manufacturer’.

PowerPlus Energy adds to PPK’s diverse portfolio of companies, including body armour supplier Craig International Ballistics, boron nitride nanotube developer BNNT Technology, lithium sulphur battery maker Li-S Energy (ASX: LIS) and transport analytics tech firm Advanced Mobility Analytics Group (AMAG).

According to PPK, PowerPlus Energy is ‘strongly aligned’ with the new owner’s objective of ‘developing sovereign capability in the clean energy revolution and supporting Australian ‘Made and Owned’ growth’, growing on its investment in Li-S Energy.

With around 80 employees, Melbourne-based PowerPlus Energy supplies modular battery storage solutions utilising lithium ferro phosphate cell technology, designed and manufactured locally for a network of just under 300 distributors and installers across Australia and New Zealand.

PPK says PowerPlus Energy currently delivers more than 50MWh of energy storage to customers each year, with expansion plans to lift capacity to more than 200MWh within the next 12 months. Its customers are primarily off-grid homes and businesses, but PPK notes there is an ‘imminent’ move into the on-grid residential battery storage market.

The acquirer notes PowerPlus has intererst-bearing debt of around $4.5 million at the completion of the transaction, of which $3.9 million is shareholder loans.

PPK adds that the company retains a fixed price pathway to increase its interest in PowerPlus to 75 per cent within two years.

The company’s chairman Robin Levinson says PowerPlus has a range of strategic, commercial and operational synergies with PPK’s other investments.

“As the world continues to shift towards renewable energy, storing that energy will play a crucial role in the reliability and efficiency of the entire energy system,” Levinson says.

“PPE recently relocated to an expanded manufacturing location, which provides growth opportunities to support the demand. Through automation, strategic growth initiatives and other business process improvements, we will be working towards growing the annual revenue of this business to $100 million within three years.

“The PPE acquisition ensures PPK can play a pivotal role in supporting the shift to renewables. We are looking forward to working with Bradley, and the broader PPE team, given his passion for PPE’s customers, employees, and the industry.”

PowerPlus Energy CEO and founder Bradley Paton says he is looking forward to the support and experience the PPK Group will bring to the business.

“The capabilities and expansion capital will help stimulate the next phase of growth in the exciting and growing clean energy sector,” Paton says.

“I am optimistic about the opportunities to drive profitable growth for PPE that will come from being part of the wider PPK family and accessing their commercial and technical experience.”

Shares in PPK are up 1.59 per cent to $1.28 per share at 11.47am AEST.

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