Demand for the batteries necessary for clean energy technologies is expected to skyrocket in the coming decades, and analysts are already questioning if supply will be able to keep up. The problem is exacerbated by supply chain issues, with China controlling more than 50 percent of total market share in the processing of nearly all battery minerals, except nickel and copper.
Miners and battery manufacturers are setting ambitious goals to keep up with demand, but there’s another option many overlook: recycling and upcycling. Analysts project lithium-ion battery capacity could reach 5,500 gigawatt-hours by 2030, up five-fold from 2021. Every watt-hour will eventually need recycling, whether right away or at the end of its life. Battery recycling is included in the US government’s National Blueprint for Lithium Batteries, as it strengthens the entire domestic supply chain. Innovative recycling technologies are emerging to feed end-of-life batteries and production waste back into the manufacturing process, creating new opportunities for investors to capitalize on the electrification revolution.
RecycLiCo Battery Materials (TSXV:AMY) is a critical metals company focusing on upcycling and recycling lithium-ion battery waste and end-of-life batteries into high-value, battery precursor cathode active materials (pCAM) and lithium chemicals. The company has invented a closed-loop RecycLiCo Patented Process to extract materials for direct integration into the re-manufacturing of new lithium-ion battery materials.
RecycLiCo’s pilot plant has already tested samples of black mass (shredded end-of-life batteries) and battery production scrap from multiple third parties and has proven the production of high-purity lithium and pCAM. The upcycled product was tested in new battery cells, which achieved equivalent performance characteristics of commercial materials from mined sources.
The conventional supply chain for battery metals is complex, requires significant global transportation, and is linearly dependent on new raw materials. RecycLiCo’s technology sidesteps this complex supply chain by processing battery production scrap and end-of-life batteries directly into high-value and specifically engineered materials that manufacturers require, closing the supply chain loop. The RecycLiCo Patented Process requires minimal processing steps and provides more than 99 percent extraction of lithium, cobalt, nickel and manganese.
RecycLiCo’s demonstration plant is designed with a 500 kg/day processing capacity of waste battery materials, and is intended to test scaled-up operating conditions to achieve optimum process configuration and commercial plant design. Testing has resulted in the production of bulk quantities of battery-grade lithium carbonate from an industrial feed of cathode scrap. The company achieved 163 percent of the designed processing capacity for lithium-ion battery cathode scrap. The leach section of its technology also achieved more than 99 percent extraction of lithium, nickel, cobalt and manganese from lithium-ion battery production scrap.
RecycLiCo has delivered samples of its battery-grade lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide to battery manufacturers in Japan and South Korea for a technical review and to explore potential business partnership opportunities.
The company entered a 50-50 joint venture with Zenith Chemical Corporation to build a 2,000-metric-ton-per-year lithium-ion battery recycling plant in Taiwan. Estimated to cost US$25 million, the initial plant will be dedicated to processing and converting lithium-ion battery waste into valuable resources such as pCAM, lithium hydroxide monohydrate and lithium carbonate.
The company continues to pursue joint ventures with strategic partners that can co-locate the recycling technology alongside the manufacturer’s facility, eliminating the need for additional transportation.
RecycLiCo’s recycling technology has undergone a life cycle assessment conducted in accordance with ISO standards and was critically reviewed by independent experts. The results indicate a dramatic reduction in global warming potential, demonstrating a 62 percent reduction over competing hydrometallurgical battery recycling methods.
RecycLiCo is led by a strong management team and advisory board with extensive experience in the natural resources industry, process development projects and international finance. The impressive roster of leaders and advisors creates additional confidence in the company’s ability to fully develop and commercialize its transformative technology.
RecycLiCo is a critical metals company focusing on developing advanced technology for recycling and upcycling battery production waste and end-of-life batteries, closing the loop of the conventional supply chain of battery metals.The company has successfully demonstrated its process at its demonstration plant by multiple samples from multiple third parties.RecycLiCo continues to conduct technology testing and development at its 6,700-square-foot demonstration plant.The company has achieved several milestones, including 99 percent leach extraction of lithium, nickel, cobalt and manganese.RecycLiCo signed its first commercial joint venture agreement with Zenith Chemical to build a 2,000-tonne/year recycling plant in Taiwan using RecycLiCo’s process.The company is pursuing commercialization of its patented process via joint ventures with strategic partners.RecycLiCo’s process has undergone an ISO-compliant life cycle assessment (LCA) reviewed by independent experts. The LCA indicates a substantial reduction in global warming potential compared to mining and other hydrometallurgical processes.The company produced and delivered NMC-811 cathode precursor samples to its active third-party collaborators in North America, Europe and Asia.The company delivered samples of its battery-grade lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide to battery manufacturers in Japan and South KoreaRecycLiCo’s recycled-upcycled precursor cathode active material was successfully used by a Korean cathode manufacturer to create battery cells that demonstrate the same level of performance as commercial precursor material.An experienced management team and advisory board to lead the company’s commercialization strategy.
RecycLiCo Patented Process
Lithium-ion battery production can experience high scrap rates. These scraps contain valuable critical metals and represent a significant loss to manufacturers. Additionally, end-of-life batteries undergo mechanical size reduction and become black mass. The RecycLiCo Patented Process recycles and upcycles both production scrap and black mass for reintegration into the manufacturing process.
Significant Improvement on Existing Methods: Not every hydrometallurgical recycling process is identical. RecycLiCo’s process requires fewer steps, produces higher-value materials, and has demonstrated a significant 62 percent reduction in global warming potential.Direct Manufacturer Integration: The RecycLiCo Patented Process can be integrated within manufacturers’ facilities, eliminating the need for additional transportation. The company is ready to scale to commercial level to pursue joint venture agreements with strategic partners.Both Recycling and Upcycling: The company’s technology recycles NMC, NCA, LCO and LMO battery chemistries and provides more than 99 percent leach extraction efficiency of lithium, nickel, manganese and cobalt. Additionally, its process upcycles extracted battery materials into valuable cathode precursors, such as NMC532, NMC622 and NMC811.The recycled-upcycled precursor cathode active material was successfully used by a Korean cathode manufacturer to create battery cells that demonstrate the same level of performance as commercial precursor material. Battery cell performance was validated using industry-standard metrics and benchmarked against multiple other recycled precursor and commercial precursor products.
Zarko Meseldzija – Chief Executive Officer and Director
Zarko Meseldzija has a range of industry experience with a deep insight into project management, process development projects, and circular economy strategies. Meseldzija holds a BSc. in Mining Engineering from the University of Alberta and obtained his MBA from the Beedie School of Business.
Andris Kikauka – Director
Andris Kikauka is a graduate of Brock University, St. Catharines, Ont., with an Honors Bachelor of Science in Geological Sciences. He is a member of the Geological Association of Canada and is registered in the Province of British Columbia as a professional geoscientist. Kikauka has practiced his profession for thirty-five years in precious and base metal exploration in the Cordillera of Western Canada, working for Anaconda Canada Exploration (1980-1984), Skyline Explorations, Inel Resources, Gulf International Minerals (1985-1989); in South America working for Carson Gold (1990); in Mexico and Guatemala working mineral exploration projects for Francisco Gold and Almaden Minerals (1996-2006); and for three years in uranium exploration in the Canadian Shield working for Rayrock Mines and Uran-Canada (1977-1979).
Ed Skoda – Director
Edward Skoda obtained a diploma in mining engineering technology from the Haileybury School of Mines in Ontario in 1971 and a diploma in business management from the British Columbia Institute of Technology in 1979. Skoda has more than 30 years of experience in the mining industry, during which time he has worked on many national and international projects. During the past 15 years, Skoda has worked as a consultant and in a supervisory capacity as a shift boss, superintendent or project manager for various mining and exploration companies. Based out of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Skoda oversees all Mexico operations for SJ Geophysics.
Paul Hildebrand – Chairman of the Board
Paul Hildebrand is associate counsel at Lidstone & Company. He is the head of the law firm’s litigation department. He won the Gold Medal in law at the University of British Columbia in 1980. Hildebrand has a doctorate in economics in addition to his law degree and master of science in mathematics. For nearly 29 years, Hildebrand has practiced law in the area of complex litigation, including a 12-year stint with McAlpine & Company, one of the leading complex litigation firms in Canada. He is responsible for the conduct of our local government clients’ litigation matters, including defense of claims, insurance matters, suing other parties, injunctions, appeals, and other litigation-related matters. He also has expertise in arbitration, mediation and conciliation. He has done securities work, including financings for public and private companies and real estate transactions.
Shaheem Ali BBA – Chief Financial Officer and Director
Shaheem Ali is a finance and business management professional with 10 years of experience in operations management, full cycle accounting, systems development, and people management. He has a proven record of implementing financial and operational processes, reducing operations costs, and improving internal controls with Alderwoods Group, where his experience includes governance and regulatory fund compliance with various states.
Teresa Piorun – Senior Corporate Officer
Teresa Piorun has been with the Reaugh Group of Companies for thirty years. Piorun is a senior corporate officer with wide-ranging responsibilities, serving as a focal point for communication with the board of directors, senior management, and the company’s shareholders, and she occupies a key role in the administration of critical corporate matters. She is the confidant and advisor to the CEO and other members of senior management, particularly on corporate governance affairs.
Jochen Rudat – Advisor
Jochen Rudat has an illustrious background and reputation in the electric vehicle industry. He has spent 10 years working under Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, where he helped launch Models S, 3, X and Roadster in Europe. Rudat was hired by Elon Musk to build a sales and marketing force in Europe that grew to nearly 300 employees during his tenure. Before Tesla, Rudat worked for several prominent car manufacturers such as BMW, Kia and Porsche. Most recently, he served as chief sales officer at Italian luxury carmaker Automobili Pininfarina to launch its electric hypercar, Battista. Moreover, Rudat is the founder of Electric Ventures, a consultancy service focused on investments in sustainable transport.
Shailesh Upreti – Advisor
Shailesh Upreti will lead an initiative to establish a lithium-ion battery giga-factory in New York.
Upreti is a well-respected lithium-ion technology expert and inventor of multiple breakthrough technologies. An IIT Delhi graduate, Upreti has worked closely with Professor Stan Whittingham in the past and holds multiple US patents and their foreign equivalents in more than 30 countries. In addition to his technical degree, he has a second masters in international business management in combination with extensive experience as an entrepreneur. Upreti has successfully brought more than five different technologies to market, including one in the material recycling space. His 16 years of extensive experience include bringing new products to market, business development, lithium-ion supply chain & industry networking, downstream processing, and investigating organizational performance gaps. He is well-integrated into the global battery industry and serves on various advisory boards. Upreti is particularly adept at defining corporate commercial objectives, and business support programs, and achieving organizational goals while bringing new technology to market.
Kurt Lageschulte – Advisor
Kurt Lageschulte is a partner and senior analyst at Broadbill Investment Partners, LLC, an investment firm with offices in New York, Florida and California, and currently has $130 million of assets under management across four managed funds. Lageschulte is a founding partner at Broadbill and was previously employed as a senior analyst with Aspen Advisors from 2002 to 2010. Lageschulte has worked as an advisor and active member of a number of committees. Most recently, he has advised the special committee of the Penn Treaty American Company board in a complex negotiation with industry regulators. His experience in the energy, renewable and mining industries, coupled with significant expertise in the capital markets, will enable him and the Broadbill team to help RecycLiCo reach its goals in the coming years.
Dr. Yi Hyon Paik – Advisor
Dr. Yi Hyon Paik, a renowned industry expert, brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in multinational companies, the electronic materials industry, and the energy storage sector.
With a distinguished career spanning several decades, Paik has held significant leadership positions in renowned organizations. He currently serves as a senior advisor at Ace Equity Partners, a position he has held since 2020. Previously, he was president and chief strategy officer of Samsung SDI Company, a publicly listed South Korean producer of lithium-ion batteries and electronic materials, where he oversaw various business units and played a pivotal role in driving strategic initiatives. Paik’s tenure at Samsung Cheil Industries also saw him serving as executive vice president and head of the electronic materials business, where he achieved remarkable revenue growth and spearheaded successful portfolio management initiatives. Paik also worked at The Dow Chemical Company and Rohm and Haas as business group vice-president and president of electronic materials business.