Venture Capital

Chemix Completes $20 Million Series A

SUNNYVALE — Chemix, a company using AI to develop next-gen EV batteries, has completed $20 million in Series A funding. The round was led by Ibex Investors with participation from Mayfield Fund, Berkeley SkyDeck, and Urban Innovation Fund. The round also included strategic investors including BNP Paribas Solar Impulse Venture Fund (SIVF), Global Brain’s KDDI Open Innovation Fund III (KDDI CVC), and Porsche Ventures, the venture capital arm of the sports car manufacturer Porsche AG.

GenAI has already made significant inroads across various sectors, from insurance to healthcare. However, the adoption of GenAI technologies for deep tech innovation has been largely confined to the drug discovery field. This is primarily due to the single most significant hurdle for any AI-driven approach: the lack of clean, structured, and high-quantity data.

To practically and effectively integrate GenAI into the battery development process, Chemix embarked on a journey from day one to build its own battery lab and collect its own data – creating its battery-specific MIX R&D platform. In less than three years, the company has tested 10,000 commercial-format pouch, cylindrical, and prismatic cells, screened through 4,000 unique electrolyte formulations and more than 2,000 pairs of unique electrode designs, and collected a total of 4.5 million cycles. The high-quality, specially curated, and AI-trainable data, all gathered through physical experimentation, have played a critical role in training Chemix’s proprietary transformer-based deep neural network, which then autonomously generates better materials and cell designs on a daily basis on behalf of battery engineers and scientists. For Chemix, this marks just the beginning of truly unleashing the full potential of GenAI to transform the decades-old battery industry, one data point at a time – a vision that is shared among both existing and newly joining Chemix investors.

“The entire Chemix team is dedicated to bringing about a paradigm shift in how we fundamentally conduct battery development by adopting an AI-first, data-driven approach,“ said Kaixiang Lin, Co-Founder and CEO of Chemix. ”This journey has been incredibly challenging yet profoundly fulfilling, with the team achieving significant technical and commercial milestones in less than three years. Now, with this latest round of funding, I am more confident than ever in our ability to accomplish our mission even faster.”

With the global EV market projected to comprise more than 50% of car sales by 2030, the demand for high-performance EV batteries, particularly for premium EV applications, is experiencing a steep rise. With MIX, Chemix can rapidly discover and optimize critical material formulations and battery configurations for different EV verticals. MIX has autonomously screened and developed—without any human intervention and in as little as two months—highly performant electrolyte materials that enable commercial-format Co- and Ni-free Li-ion batteries to achieve 1,500 continuous cycles at high temperatures or to be fast-charged for more than 2,000 cycles, versus conventional electrolyte materials that can last only one-fifth as long. The company has also developed a suite of next-gen Co- and Ni-free batteries that present a 20% higher energy density than mainstream LFP chemistry cells, are equally safe, and can last for more than 1500 cycles under heavy-duty testing conditions. This chemistry in large pouch-format cells has been third-party validated by established EV OEMs. Meanwhile, the evaluation of high-volume, high-capacity prismatic-format cells is underway.

Chemix’s innovation has resulted in strongly growing market adoption. Earlier this year, the Company signed a commercial agreement to supply 2-GWh worth of batteries to a cutting-edge EV manufacturer for its premium off-road SUV and pack product lines. To continue driving its market traction, Chemix will leverage its new financing round to scale global operations to meet the growing demand and expand its market penetration to specialized EV segments such as e-motorcycles, utility e-motorbikes, and commercial EVs.

“When it comes to choosing the best EV battery chemistry and format, there’s unfortunately no one-size-fits-all approach,” said Jeff Peters of Ibex Investors, who has been investing in automotive startups for nearly a decade. “Chemix’s unique GenAI-powered platform approach to designing and optimizing bespoke batteries for each EV vertical is precisely what automakers need to produce highly differentiated, cost-competitive vehicles. And, they are delivering today.”