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Daimler Places Bet on Next-Generation Battery Startup

April 16, 2019
Daimler invests in Sila Nanotechnologies and Jeff Immelt will join the board.

As it pushes to electrify its fleet, German automaker Daimler AG has invested in a startup that says it can boost battery performance by at least 20%.

Daimler led a $170 million financing round for Sila Nanotechnologies Inc., a San Francisco Bay Area startup that makes silicon-based anode materials for lithium-ion batteries, according to a statement on April 16.

The startup has raised $295 million to date.

Daimler, which expects electric models to make up at least 15% of Mercedes-Benz sales by 2025, will take a seat on Sila’s board.

Sila also announced that former General Electric Co. CEO Jeff Immelt will join the board.

“Advancements in lithium-ion batteries have become increasingly limited, and we are fighting for incremental improvements,” Immelt said in the statement.

By David R. Baker

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