Not only is LA becoming a hub for electric vehicle companies, in October 2011 Los Angeles launched its new cleantech business incubator (LACI) to accelerate development of cleantech start-ups by offering flexible office space, CEO coaching and mentoring, and access to a growing network of experts and capital. LACI is the business equivalent of baseball’s farm system: it identifies local talent, nurtures it, and helps it get to market, resulting in more jobs and a bigger green economy in Los Angeles.The Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI) announced the acceptance of California Lithium Battery (CALiB) into its Portfolio Company Program making it the sixth start-up in LACI’s portfolio. CALiB has licensed new technology from the Argonne National Labs that improves the performance of lithium batteries by 3X. CALiB’s goal is to be the leading United States-based developer and manufacturer of high performance Very Large Format lithium batteries for utility energy storage, EVs and specialized industrial applications.
Fred Walti, Executive Director of LACI said,“Developing game changing technology in energy storage is a key requirement for wider adoption of sustainable energy. We’re impressed with California Lithium’s technology, which has been developed and validated by the Argonne National Labs, and its business strategy to enter the utility scale energy storage market. While it’s too early to declare victory, CALiB’s batteries could effectively lower the Li-ion battery cost by 70%,”
“LA is emerging as the new global test center for advanced energy technologies and we thank Mayor Villaraigosa and the LADWP for their stewardship of the LACI” said Phil Roberts, CEO of CalBattery. He continued, “as a great example of public private partnership that is helping small businesses do big things for their community. The help and connections of the LACI it will enable CalBattery to create good manufacturing jobs stemming from our new energy storage and EV lithium silicon-graphene battery made in LA for export to the entire global community.” It was just this past October Mayor Villaraigosa welcomed solar and electric vehicle maker, BYD to its North American headquarters in downtown Los Angeles, and In November 2011 Electric maker Coda also set LA as its global headquarters.