Ilika plc (AIM:IKA), the advanced cleantech materials discovery company, is pleased to announce it has renewed a contract with a major existing customer for the development of novel battery materials. Together with other secured orders, this contract brings the level of committed revenues to approximately £1.2 million for the current financial year ending 30 April 2011, which exceeds the revenue recognised in Ilika’s entire previous financial year.
The work carried out by Ilika in the previous phases of this project will be presented by the customer at the 61st Annual Meeting of the International Society of Electrochemistry scheduled to be held in Nice, France later this month.
The market for lithium-ion batteries is expected to grow from its current level of $8 billion per annum to $32 billion per annum by 2018. The fastest growing segment of this market is expected to be for electric and hybrid electric vehicles.
Commenting on the renewal of the contract, Graeme Purdy, CEO of Ilika, said: “The market for electric and hybrid electric vehicles is growing rapidly and presents a huge opportunity for us to develop new materials for batteries, which need to be the right size and have sufficient energy capacity and charge rates. We will focus on these areas, building on the technical successes of previous phases of the project to bring this rapidly advancing field closer to commercial adoption.”
A number of governments around the world, including the UK, US and Japan, have introduced incentives to stimulate the deployment of electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). The main technical hurdle to overcome for the mass market roll-out of these vehicles is the development of batteries with large energy capacity (to extend driving range) and rapid charge/discharge rates. The key to improved battery performance lies in the use of new cell chemistries, whereby the principal components of the cell, the electrodes and electrolytes, are made from carefully selected materials. Ilika’s technology is particularly suited to the rapid synthesis and screening of the diverse chemistries currently of interest to the battery industry.
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Tel. +44 (0) 23 8011 1400
Graeme Purdy, Chief Executive
Steve Boydell, Finance Director
Nomura Code Securities Ltd
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Pelham Bell Pottinger
Tel. +44 (0) 20 7861 3232
NOTES TO EDITORS
Ilika is an advanced materials company which accelerates the discovery of new and patentable materials using its unique high throughput technologies (‘‘HTT’’) process for identified end uses in the energy, electronics and biomedical sectors. This process enables hundreds of scalable materials to be made in a single, automated operation and subsequently tested for key properties.
Traditionally, materials development has been a slow and arduous task, with manual, sequential methods used to make samples of material that are then tested for suitability. On average, it takes between 7 and 10 years to move from an initial discovery through to the first commercial prototype. Experiments carried out by the Company can be executed 10 to 100 times faster than using traditional techniques.
The Company focuses on three principal sectors and has a number of active development programmes addressing markets within each sector:
Energy - developing innovative new materials for Lithium-ion batteries for vehicles for Toyota; developing high capacity hydrogen storage materials with Shell Hydrogen and Johnson Matthey through joint development programmes; developing cheaper alternatives to Platinum electrodes for use in fuel cells through a grant-funded project with the Carbon Trust; developing new materials for use in fuel cells for the transport sector for a major vehicle manufacturer; and carrying out in-house research on film photovoltaic solar cells.
Electronics - developing lead-free piezoelectric materials through a joint development programme with CeramTec; and developing phase change memory materials for high capacity memory chips and is currently in negotiations with a major electronics manufacturer.
Biomedical - developing polymers to enable the filtering of somatic stem cells from blood with a major global supplier of filters; it has been selling its Cryoskin and Myskin products for the treatment of burns and wounds in the UK through a specialist distributor and intends to commence clinical trials of its corneal bandage candidate.
The Group’s commercialisation strategy is to enter into joint development or licensing agreements with large multinational companies which are seeking to commercialise products developed using the intellectual property created through jointly-funded programmes. Current commercialisation partners include large multinational companies such as Toyota, Shell, Johnson Matthey and CeramTec. The Company generates revenues from three sources: licensing and milestone payments from joint development programmes; fee for service from contract research projects; and from sales of Cryoskin and Myskin.