Li-Cycle was founded in 2016 in Toronto, Ontario with the vision to solve the global end-of-life lithium-ion battery problem and creating a secondary supply to meet the demand for critical battery materials through innovative recycling technology. Historically, most lithium-ion battery recycling processes have treated the product as waste and a liability. Li-Cycle has reinvented the recycling process by developing and validating a patented technology that enables recoveries of at least 95% of all materials found in lithium-ion batteries through an innovative, zero-waste process. This compares to the industry norm of less than 50% recovery. The company is capable of processing all types of lithium-ion batteries used in electronic devices, e-mobility, electric vehicles and other energy storage applications.
As the first step in Li-Cycle’s patented, two-part Spoke and Hub process, batteries are shipped to an initial ‘Spoke’ location, where the materials are mechanically processed by Li-Cycle’s safe-size reduction technology. The material is then safely transported to a second ‘Hub’ location, where the intermediate product from the Spoke is put through a hydrometallurgical, or wet chemistry, process. The resulting components are then returned to their original, battery-grade chemical states, including lithium, nickel, cobalt, manganese, and more for reintegration into the lithium-ion battery supply chain.
Today, Li-Cycle is the largest lithium-ion battery recycler in North America, with 10,000 tons/yr of Spoke capacity. This is equivalent to a capacity to process over 1 GWh of batteries per year. Li-Cycle’s Spoke facility in Kingston, Ontario is operational, and the company is commissioning a second Spoke facility in Rochester, New York, which it plans to be operational during Q4 2020. Li-Cycle is also developing a Hub facility to be located in close proximity to its Rochester Spoke facility.
Jett Capital advisors LLC acted as financial advisor, and McCarthy Tetrault LLP and Freshfields Bruchhaus Deringer US LLP acted as legal advisors, to Li-Cycle in connection with this transaction.