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Paper-thin battery firm raises $30 million

Posted by iMark - 2005-11-10

LONDON — Power Paper Ltd., the Israeli group developing thin and flexible micro-power source technology and devices, has nearly doubled the financial backing from venture capital groups by raising a further $30 million. The extra funds will be used for further development of and finding new applications for the paper-thin battery.

The round was led by Apax Partners, which invested $16 million, and Clal Industries and Investments and the Infinity Venture Capital Fund, which together invested $12 million. Previous investor, Banc America Capital Partners, also participated in the round, investing $2 million.

Previous investors included Amadeus Capital Partners (U.K.), Millennium Fund (Israel) and Toppan Forms (Japan).

Power Paper’s batteries do not require metal casing and can be printed cost-effectively directly on to paper, plastic, or other substrates, using standard printing equipment. The battery technology allows product manufacturers to design a power source that suits a specific product, rather than match the product to the form factor of the power source.

The power source is already integrated into the company’s PowerID RFID labels and its PowerCosmetics patches, used to help the penetration of cosmetics and therapeutic patches.

The Power Paper cells are composed of zinc and manganese dioxide. The cathode and anode are produced as different mixes of ink, so that the combination of the two creates a battery that is thin and flexible.

Unlike conventional batteries, the power source does not require casing. The company also offers complementary thin, flexible polymer displays, integrated circuits, and packaging technologies.

Currently Power Paper offers four types of standard batteries, which are 1.5 volts, 0.5 mm thick, and feature a flat power discharge. Multiple matching cells can be stacked or located side by side for increased voltage and current requirements.

The company employs about 80 people at its headquarters in Petah Tikva, outside of Tel Aviv.

Commenting on the investment, Gal Hayut, director of Apax Partners said: “The inherent business potential of Power Paper’s patents and capabilities is unlimited and, to date, has been only partially realized.”

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