Better Place secures $350 million

Chris Caceres · January 25, 2010 · Short URL:

Startup looking to power the worlds electric vehicles

Better Place announced it has secured $350 million in new equity financing.  The Series B round values Better Place at $1.25 billion.  

New investors include HSBC, which led the round with an investment of $125 million, Morgan Stanley Investment Management, and Lazard Asset Management.  Previous investors include Israel Corp., VantagePoint Venture Partners, Ofer Hi-Tech Holdings, Morgan Stanley Principal Investments, and Maniv Energy Capital.  

Founded in 2007, Better Place is working on building infrastructure to deliver power to electric vehicles around the world.  To sum it up, the company aims to have electric powering stations set up all over roads, which robotically charge and replace batteries of electric vehicles.  

And the California-based company has come a way - it's been working with car manufacturer, Renault to launch the first switchable battery electric vehicle.  It plans to roll these out in Israel and Denmark at the end of 2011.

With this round, Better Place has raised around $700 million to support its mission of mass adoption of electric vehicles.  "The resources will fund the the next phase of research, development and testing, and will support deployment in early markets and allow for expansion into additional regions," said Charles Stonehill, CFO of Better Place.

The company plans to expand into markets including Europe and Asia.  It also plans to deploy in Australia and select North American markets shortly after its Israel and Denmark launch in 2011.

Although Better Place has raised hundreds of millions by now, the startup will most likely require billions in financing to fully carry out its plans, notes the NY Times.

A demo of the battery switching station: 

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