Tesla to Buy Battery Maker Maxwell Technologies in a $218 Million All-Stock Deal

Tesla to Buy Battery Maker Maxwell Technologies in a $218 Million All-Stock Deal

Author: FutureCar Staff    

Electric automaker Tesla announced today the purchase of Maxwell Technologies, a San Diego-based developer and manufacturer of battery solutions, including ultracapacitors and electric vehicle battery cells.

"We are always looking for potential acquisitions that make sense for the business and support Tesla's mission to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy," Tesla said in a statement.

Tesla will purchase all of the company's 45.9 million shares for $4.75 a share in an all-stock transaction. The deal represents a 55 percent premium over Maxwell's closing stock price of $3.07 a share last Friday and would value the company at around $218 million.

The closing of the transaction is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2019 pending regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions. Upon completion of the deal, Maxwell will become a become a wholly owned subsidiary of Tesla.

Dr. Franz Fink, President and Chief Executive Officer of Maxwell said in a statement, "We are very excited with today's announcement that Tesla has agreed to acquire Maxwell. Tesla is a well-respected and world-class innovator that shares a common goal of building a more sustainable future," said "We believe this transaction is in the best interests of Maxwell stockholders and offers investors the opportunity to participate in Tesla's mission of accelerating the advent of sustainable transport and energy."

Maxwell's primary focus is making ultracapacitors, devices that can store and rapidly deliver surges of energy.

Ultracapacitors store their energy in an electric field, rather than in a chemical reaction like traditional batteries. This allows them to charge and discharge almost instantly. Ultracapacitors are about 30 percent more efficient than conventional batteries, with up to 60 times the power density of today's lithium-ion batteries.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is said to be a fan of the technology and its potential for use in electric vehicles.

In a 2013 tweet, Musk said he had planned to conduct research on ultracapacitors at Stanford University and said that the technology could be a "bigger breakthrough in electric vehicle technology than batteries."

According to Maxwell, ultracapacitors are generally designed to complement conventional batteries and it is more common for them to be paired in applications. The power of ultracapacitors combined with the energy of batteries can enable rapid response times, extend operational temperature range and lengthen battery life by up to two times.

Ultracapacitors, often referred to as called supercapacitors, are already in use in the automotive industry. They have been integrated into millions of vehicles equipped with the common fuel-saving start-stop function, which shuts off the car's engine during a stop, such as at a traffic light, and quickly restarts the engine whenever the brake pedal is released.

When used in a battery-based engine start-stop system, ultracapacitors relieve a vehicle's battery of high current loads and repetitive cycling, which shortens lifespan.

Maxwell Technologies has also worked with General Motors and Geely, the Chinese parent company of Sweden's Volvo.

FutureCar Staff
FutureCar Staff
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