GreenTech Media: Julian Spector / November 17, 2020
Challenging lithium-ion’s battery market supremacy is not easy, but Eos will at least get a capital infusion to fund its growth.
Eos Energy Storage, the aqueous zinc battery startup, listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange Tuesday after CEO Joe Mastrangelo virtually rang the opening bell.
The 12-year-old company now goes by the name Eos Energy Enterprise, Inc. and trades under the symbol EOSE. Rather than conduct a traditional initial public offering, Eos partnered with a special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) called B. Riley Principal Merger Corp. II.
Numerous clean energy startups have gone public this year via the SPAC maneuver, which streamlines the process compared to a typical IPO. But the predecessors largely came from the vehicle space, like hydrogen truck maker Nikola Motor, which briefly approached Ford’s market valuation after listing. Battery company QuantumScape also took the SPAC route this year, but its hardware is largely focused on supplying electric vehicles with safer, more energy-dense cells.
Eos, on the other hand, makes novel hardware for stationary grid storage, a battery that uses zinc instead of the conventional lithium-ion chemistries. The company is asking investors to bet that grid storage installations will surge — not a risky bet, as U.S. installations will double this year, and again next year, according to data from Wood Mackenzie. But beyond that, an investment in Eos is a bet on developers choosing to stray from the mass-produced lithium-ion technology that supplies almost all today’s grid battery projects.
So far, EOSE is holding around the $10.50 share price where it opened Tuesday morning, on a day when the Nasdaq overall is down. Owners of 37 percent of the SPAC’s shares opted to redeem, or cash out, prior to the merger with Eos. After subtracting fees, the transaction is on track to net Eos around $130 million, CEO Joe Mastrangelo told GTM Tuesday.
“Now we have the capital to really realize the potential of the company,” he said. “To get where we are is truly phenomenal.”