Recent Deals-11 May: Microbial Nitrogen Technology, Zinc-Air Batteries, Support-Free 3-D Printing and More

What’s happening with cleantech deals in the midst of Covid? Well, there’s yield-boosting nitrogen technology,  zinc-air batteries, support-free 3-D metal printing, bio-degradable bio-based polymers and more. Have a look at our overview of the most recent deals.

Agriculture & Food

Pivot Bio, a developer of a microbe that fixes nitrogen in crops using synthetic biotechnology, raised $100 million in a growth equity round from investors including Breakthrough Energy Ventures, Temasek Holdings, DCVC, Prelude Ventures, Spruce Capital Partners, Codon Capital, Bunge Ventures, Continental Grain Company, Tekfen Ventures, Pavilion Capital, and angle investors Alan Cohen and Roger Underwood. The new funding will help the company scale its microbial nitrogen technology that promises to help farmers boost crop yield, expand internationally into Latin America and Canada and begin marketing a new product for wheat crops which is currently being introduced into the US market.

Energy & Power

ZAF Energy Systems, a developer of high-performance battery technology, raised $22 million in a Series A round. The investment came from Elevage Capital Management, Catalus Capital, Holt Ventures and Coventry Asset Management. The company is developing batteries based on zinc-air chemistry and has a partnership with Wirtz Manufacturing for scaling up its manufacturing line. Funding will be used to accelerate licensing, joint venture negotiations and the commercialization of its technology in markets like large-scale data storage, telecommunications, healthcare and commercial trucking industries.

Materials & Chemicals

Velo3D, a provider of printers and software for metal 3D printing applications, raised $28 million in a growth equity round from Piva Venture Capital, TNSC, Bessemer Venture Partners, Playground Ventures and Khosla Ventures. Velo3D introduced the first support-free capability for 3D metal printing which enables design innovation by reducing the need for support structures in metal additive manufacturing. The funding will be used to expand Velo3D’s product portfolio to include more machine options, compatible alloys and enhanced software/hardware capabilities.

Resources & Environment

RWDC Industries, a developer of a bio-degradable, bio-based PHA polymer produced by fermenting plant-based oils and sugars, raised $133 million in a Series B round from Vickers Venture Partners, Flint Hills Resources, CPV/CAP Pensionskasse Coop, Interogo, Eversource Retirement Plan Master Trust, and WI Harper Group. The investment funding will be used for R&D and to expand PHA production capacity by repurposing an idle factory in Athens, Georgia.

Transportation & Logistics

Nexar, a developer of connected vehicle and safety enhancing dashcam and HUD-type technologies, raised a $52 million growth equity round from Corner Ventures, Samsung NEXT, La Maison Compagnie d’Investissement, Micron Ventures, Sompo, Atreides Management, Aleph, Mosaic Ventures, Ibex Ventures and Nationwide Insurance. This funding will support the development of new data services and global expansion. Most recently, the company launched a new data product called Nexar Virtual Camera, which pulls a feed of frames from any location on the Nexar network to help public officials manage public health during the COVID outbreak. The company also confirmed a partnership with Japanese insurance giant Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Co. (MSI) to put Nexar tech into hundreds of thousands of vehicles in Japan.


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