Statevolt Secures 135-Acre Site for Battery Gigafactory in the Imperial Valley

David Shultz

David Shultz reports on clean technology and electric vehicles, among other industries, for dot.LA. His writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Outside, Nautilus and many other publications.

Statevolt Secures 135-Acre Site for Battery Gigafactory in the Imperial Valley

Statevolt, a battery cell manufacturing company, has secured a site for their gigafactory in the Imperial Valley. As the American sister to their Italian counterpart, Italvolt, the company is seeking to rapidly expand its battery production facilities to the United States by capturing funding created by the Inflation Reduction Act.


Statevolt CEO Lars Carlstrom says he’s hopeful that they’ll be able to break ground on the 54 GWh factory as early as August or September 2024. In addition, Carlstrom hopes to have the first batteries rolling off the lines just 18 months later. Eventually, after a few years of ramping up, the factory should be able to produce 650,000 batteries annually, which would make it one of the largest of its kind in the country.

The company’s ultimate ambition is to produce their batteries using materials and supply chains entirely from the United States. Achieving this goal would make Statevolt’s cells incredibly attractive to U.S. electric vehicle manufacturers seeking to qualify for the Inflation Reduction Act rebates, which require that vehicles meet certain thresholds for domestic manufacturing and material sourcing.

Statevolt has chosen the Imperial Valley to host its plant due to the rich lithium reserves in the Salton Sea. As dot.LA reported last spring, the company has forged a partnership with Controlled Thermal Resources (CTR), one of the three major companies racing to commercialize direct lithium extraction in the region. Under the terms of the partnership, CTR would provide the lithium and Statevolt would produce the batteries and sell them to OEMs. CTR is still in the process of scaling their technology to the industrial level, but Carlstrom says he’s confident in their protocol and process. Adding that, “they are still on track with a 2025 timeline, when they can start producing both energy and lithium.”

Carlstrom and Statevolt had initially planned to put their gigafactory right next to CTR’s lithium extraction plant. But the permitting process for the location proved tricky, and with so much new funding up for grabs in the Inflation Reduction Act, the company wanted to accelerate their timelines and ultimately decided on a different, less complicated site, about half an hour a way.

The last piece of the puzzle in the region that Statevolt and CTR are looking for, Carlstrom says, is a refinery that can take the raw materials from the CTR plant and process it into battery grade lithium for Statevolt to use in the batteries. “If you need to send the lithium into China to refine it, and then send it back, then you're losing the hyperlocal narrative,” says Carlstrom. That narrative is important both from a carbon footprint perspective–shipping lithium across the Pacific and back is incredibly emission-intensive–but also may prove important to meet the increasingly stringent guidelines outlined in the Inflation Reduction Act.

If Carlstrom’s “hyperlocal” battery production vision works in the Imperial Valley, he says the company may try to replicate the experiment in other locations across the country in the coming years.

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March Capital Raises $650 Million Fund to Invest in AI Startups

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

March Capital Raises $650 Million Fund to Invest in AI Startups
March Capital founder Jamie Montgomery. Illustration by Dilara Mundy.

Santa Monica-based venture outfit March Capital announced Feb. 3 that it raised its largest fund to date, a $650 million investment vehicle that will be used to back up to 15 startups focused on delivering new uses of artificial intelligence.

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The Three Best Ways to Work With Your Startup Board

Spencer Rascoff

Spencer Rascoff serves as executive chairman of dot.LA. He is an entrepreneur and company leader who co-founded Zillow, Hotwire, dot.LA, Pacaso and Supernova, and who served as Zillow's CEO for a decade. During Spencer's time as CEO, Zillow won dozens of "best places to work" awards as it grew to over 4,500 employees, $3 billion in revenue, and $10 billion in market capitalization. Prior to Zillow, Spencer co-founded and was VP Corporate Development of Hotwire, which was sold to Expedia for $685 million in 2003. Through his startup studio and venture capital firm, 75 & Sunny, Spencer is an active angel investor in over 100 companies and is incubating several more.

The Three Best Ways to Work With Your Startup Board

When launching and running a startup, your board of directors is one of your most valuable assets. If you already understand why you need a board and how to structure your board, it may be tempting to think you can cross that item off the list. But building a board is just the beginning. Now you’ve got to get down to business—together.

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This Week in ‘Raises’: Saviynt Lands $205M, Pagos Secures $34M

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is a reporter at dot.LA. Prior to that, she was an editorial fellow at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

This Week in ‘Raises’: Saviynt Lands $205M, Pagos Secures $34M
This Week in ‘Raises’:

While it was a slow week of funding in Los Angeles, security vendor Saviynt managed to score $205 million that will be used to meet the company’s growing demand for its converged identity platform and accelerate innovation.

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