Canadian lithium-ion battery maker Electrovaya racks up orders, cranks up German subsidiary: ‘We’ve taken off’ – by Peter Kuitenbrouwer (Financial Post – July 9, 2016)

The sprawling Electrovaya Inc. factory in Mississauga, Ont., looks more like a graveyard for prototype electric cars than the clean, green future of our battery-powered planet. The plant is about 90 per cent empty. A locker room for hundreds of workers lies abandoned. Nearby sit four green “Maya 2000” electric cars.

Further along languish more cars, including an SUV that Sankar Das Gupta, the rumpled, effusive electrochemist who is Electrovaya’s chief executive, proudly calls, “the first electric car in North America.” Asked why these cars are parked, Das Gupta blames Canadian investors’ historic aversion to risk and Transport Canada rules that forbid vehicle road tests.

In a corner of the quiet shop floor labelled New Product Introduction, two older engineers hunch over laptops connected to a network board plugged into black boxes containing hundreds of interconnected lithium-ion battery cells.

It doesn’t look like much. Yet investors have bid up Electrovaya shares almost 300 per cent on the Toronto Stock Exchange since late May. As the world looks for alternatives to the internal combustion engine, light, safe, powerful batteries to drive electric cars, buses, forklifts and other machinery, as well as store wind and solar power are the holy grails of a low-carbon world. Electrovaya says it has these batteries.

“I think we’ve taken off,” Das Gupta said. “The world has to use our technology for everything. Absolutely. In the last few weeks we have won massive contracts. We will be the technology provider.”

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