Tuesday, June 20, 2023

The Air District has awarded a loan guarantee to SPARKZ, a next-generation battery manufacturer re-engineering the battery supply chain in the United States. 

The company’s energy storage solution reduces the cost of domestic lithium battery production by eliminating the cobalt and nickel traditionally used in their manufacturing. The pioneering process developed by SPARKZ would lower the cost of lithium-ion batteries, remove environmental concerns around mining cobalt, and reduce constrictions created by a foreign supply chain.

This loan guarantee is the most recent project under the Air District’s Climate Tech Finance program. In partnership with the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank and the Northern California Financial Development Corporation, the Climate Tech Finance team led a technology qualification, social equity impact and greenhouse gas analysis that deemed SPARKZ eligible for a multimillion-dollar loan guarantee. This loan guarantee supported SPARKZ in securing a line of credit with East West Bank.

The core value of the Climate Tech Finance program is to support innovative climate projects and the Air District’s greenhouse gas analysis ensures that new technologies will reduce short- and long-term greenhouse gas emissions. The Climate Tech Finance loan guarantee provides a credit enhancement that supports SPARKZ’s manufacturing to meet growing demand from customers. SPARKZ batteries are estimated to reduce 1,200 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions per year in California by replacing diesel school and transit buses with electric buses and using stationary batteries to reduce the loan on the power grid.

SPARKZ will create jobs across the lithium battery value chain in California by generating employment opportunities in the deployment, installation, service and maintenance sectors associated with its batteries. The company has committed to 800 new, full-time jobs and over $700 million in investments throughout California.

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Last Updated: 6/16/2023