Britishvolt, Scorpio Group to research maritime EV batteries, storage

FILE PHOTO: A view shows stacked shipping containers at the port of Felixstowe, Britain, October 13, 2021. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

LONDON (Reuters) - Britishvolt said on Wednesday that Monaco-based Scorpio Group had made a strategic investment in the electric vehicle (EV) battery startup and the two companies will research battery power and storage options for maritime shipping.

Britishvolt's "access to the UK's cutting-edge scientific community ensure that we will be able to work together to further accelerate green-propulsion and potentially power storage solutions for maritime," said Filippo Lauro, vice president of Scorpio, part of the same group as oil tanker company Scorpio Tankers and renewable energy firm Eneti.

Global shipping companies have been researching electric and hydrogen-powered vessels as zero-emission options for maritime use, with several trials ongoing for both technologies.

Emissions-free ferries EGhave operated in Scandinavian waters for several years, including The Tycho Brahe and Aurora ferries run by Sweden’s ForSea between Helsingborg in Sweden and Helsingor in Denmark.

In March, Britishvolt launched a Series C funding round with a starting investment of 40 million pounds ($53 million) from mining giant Glencore.

The company has also secured UK government backing for a battery plant project in northern England, unlocking 1.7 billion pounds ($2.10 billion) in private funding.

Britishvolt is also working with British sports carmakers Aston Martin and Lotus to develop batteries.

Scorpio and Britishvolt did not disclose the size of the strategic investment, but a source familiar with the matter told Reuters it was in the "single-digit millions" of pounds.

($1 = 0.8096 pounds)

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