Plextronics has closed a $14 million Series B-1 financing round, which was led by Solvay North American Investments (a member of the Solvay Group). This marks Solvay’s second investment in Plextronics in three years, raising the Belgian chemical firm’s stake to $12 million and making it the largest minority shareholder in the printed electronics materials development company.
Plextronics’ president/CEO Andy Hannah (pictured) said that the financing will allow the company to continue to grow its R&D and pilot manufacturing programs, all of which are aimed at the commercialization of its technology. “The funding from this round will enable us to continue to advance our lighting and solar products–namely our organic light emitting diode (OLED) and organic photovoltaic (OPV) materials and inks – so that we can scale these products to meet the customer and industry demand we are seeing.”
Hannah also indicated that the affiliation with Solvay has gone very well since the two companies began working together in 2007, noting that “the global collaboration that our companies envisioned a couple of years ago is going even better than we could have imagined. To have a corporate investor like Solvay that understands our markets, technology and the opportunities that await us is extremely important.”
Leopold Demiddeleer, GM of Solvay’s future businesses competence center, said that his company “has identified organic electronics and sustainable energy as platforms for future growth based on radical innovation. The group believes that the new materials and technologies, which it is currently developing through its own R&D efforts and a number of partnerships with technological leaders, convey potential solutions to some of our contemporary societies’ most acute issues, such as the cost-effective implementation of renewable energy sources and energy-efficient devices. With its cutting edge technology, Plextronics is a perfect partner for one of Solvay’s most promising innovation platforms,” added Demiddeleer.
Plextronics said that several of its existing private investors also contributed to the latest financing; the last completed by the Pittsburgh-based company was a $25 million Series B financing in 2007.
A PV-Tech blog about the testing of Plextronics’ organic PV test modules at NREL and the company’s OPV efforts can be found here.