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TDK Ventures invests in 15-minute EV charging startup Exponent Energy

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  • India-based Exponent Energy is re-engineering the complete energy stack – the battery pack, charging station, and connector – to unlock affordable and scalable rapid charging technology
  • TDK Ventures partners with Exponent to bring to market this game-changing approach to EV batteries and infrastructure, contributing to the shared vision of continued energy transformation around the globe

TDK Corporation (TSE: 6762) announced today that subsidiary TDK Ventures has invested in battery and charging system innovator Exponent Energy and its reimagining of EV battery technology, tailor-made for the Indian last-mile logistics market. Coming fresh off helping build the 2W EV OEM Ather, now a highly valued EV startup in India, Exponent Energy founders Arun Vinayak and Sanjay Byalal Jagannath have led a top-notch team of technical experts to bring a much-needed solution to the Indian battery market, where cost efficiency and last-mile logistics are crucial.

Exponent’s proprietary energy stack – comprised of the battery pack (e^pack), charging station (e^pump), and charging connector (e^plug) together unlock a 0%-100% rapid charge, in 15 minutes for EVs and a 3000-cycle lifetime warranty using regular LFP cells. Exponent partners with OEMs to integrate its e^pack to create a rapid charging variant and sets up a network of e^pumps for users operating in logistics to seamlessly charge their Exponent-powered EVs.
In the last 9 months, its technology has achieved product market fit with customers in India, with over 500 Exponent-powered EVs covering over 3 million kilometers and completing 60,000+ rapid charging sessions.

Energy transformation shouldn’t be restricted to a subset of society; decarbonization is important for everyone, and through its technology, Exponent Energy provides greater access to energy-transformative technologies. That is exactly why TDK Ventures partnered with Exponent Energy: to support both organizations’ mutual vision for improving tomorrow through technology. The TDK Ventures team hopes to scale Exponent’s solution and help accelerate their development.

Exponent Energy CEO, Arun Vinayak stated, “Mobility is about freedom and accessibility. To unlock EV adoption at scale, we need EVs to charge faster, last longer, and cost a whole lot less. Our mission to simplify the broken energy ecosystem and provide greater access to energy-transformative technologies struck a chord with TDK – making this a perfect partnership. We’re excited to work closely together to transform the EV industry.”

Nicolas Sauvage, TDK Ventures President commented, “I was impressed by Arun and his talented team when I met them in their office in Bengaluru earlier this year. Exponent’s groundbreaking achievement in crafting an economical and scalable 15-minute rapid charging solution utilizing standard LFP cells is revolutionary, allowing electric vehicles to adopt a more compact battery pack that can swiftly charge within a concentrated public charging infrastructure, effectively removing range anxiety. We share the vision of expanding rapid charging accessibility at a reasonable cost, making electric mobility an option for everyone. This collaboration represents an exciting stride toward a more sustainable and electrified future.”

About TDK Corporation

TDK Corporation is a world leader in electronic solutions for the smart society based in Tokyo, Japan. Built on a foundation of material sciences mastery, TDK welcomes societal transformation by resolutely remaining at the forefront of technological evolution and deliberately “Attracting Tomorrow.” It was established in 1935 to commercialize ferrite, a key material in electronic and magnetic products. TDK’s comprehensive, innovation-driven portfolio features passive components such as ceramic, aluminum electrolytic and film capacitors, as well as magnetics, high-frequency, and piezo and protection devices. The product spectrum also includes sensors and sensor systems such as temperature and pressure, magnetic, and MEMS sensors. In addition, TDK provides power supplies and energy devices, magnetic heads and more. These products are marketed under the product brands TDK, EPCOS, InvenSense, Micronas, Tronics and TDK-Lambda. TDK focuses on demanding markets in automotive, industrial and consumer electronics, and information and communication technology. The company has a network of design and manufacturing locations and sales offices in Asia, Europe, and in North and South America. In fiscal 2023, TDK posted total sales of USD 16.1 billion and employed about 103,000 people worldwide.

About TDK Ventures

TDK Ventures Inc. invests in startups to bolster innovation in materials science, energy/power and related areas typically underrepresented in venture capital portfolios. Established in 2019 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of TDK Corporation, the corporate venture company’s vision is to propel the digital and energy transformations of segments such as next-generation transportation, robotics and industrial, mixed reality and the wider IoT/IIoT markets. TDK Ventures will co-invest and support promising portfolio companies by providing technical expertise and access to global markets where

About Exponent Energy

Led by Arun Vinayak & Sanjay Byalal, Exponent Energy aims to simplify energy for EVs. The company has built a battery pack named e^pack; charging station called e^pump; and charging connector e^plug that together unlock a 0 to 100% charge in 15 minutes for EVs with any number of wheels & provide a 3000-cycle life warranty – all while using regular Li-ion cells to make rapid charging truly affordable and scalable.

Funding

Norwest Venture Partners backed Celebal Tech raises Debt from BlackSoil

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Celebal Technologies debt from blacksoil

Celebal Technologies, a leading IT services provider backed by Norwest Venture Partners, has announced that it has raised debt from alternative credit platform BlackSoil. The amount of the same remains undisclosed. 

This latest capital infusion will be used for working capital and general corporate purposes. It will enable Celebal Technologies to serve its 200+ client base better and deepen its market penetration worldwide.

In 2022, Celebal Technologies raised $32M in its first institutional fundraising from marque investor Norwest Venture Partners – a global venture and growth equity investment firm, managing $15+ Bn in capital as on date.

Headquartered in Jaipur and co-founded in 2016 by Anupam Gupta and Anirudh Kala, Celebal Technologies specialises in Data Science, AI, and Enterprise Cloud Solutions. The Company has become a dominant force in the IT sector, assisting its extensive clientele with improving business efficiencies and providing tailored solutions primarily in data engineering, cloud innovation, supply chain analytics, and AI-driven chatbots.

Commenting on the same, Ankur Bansal, Co-Founder and Director of BlackSoil, said, “As a forward-thinking enterprise poised for significant growth, Celebal Technologies is uniquely positioned to lead in the AI sector globally. With their strategic partnership with industry giants Microsoft and & Databricks, they are set to revolutionise the market with cutting-edge solutions. Starting in a Tier II city, the journey of Celebal Technologies is a beacon of inspiration. We are thrilled to support their global expansion ambition and are confident in their potential for long-term success.”

Celebal Technologies has demonstrated exceptional growth, achieving an annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 105% from FY21 to FY24. During this period, the number of employees grew from 300+ to 2,300+. This extraordinary growth course is bolstered by strategic partnerships with industry giants such as Microsoft and Databricks, fuelling Celebal Technologies’ drive to innovate and expand its client base effectively.

Hemant Mathur, CFO Celebal Technologies said, “This debt financing from BlackSoil is tailored to our unique needs. Providing us flexibility to seize market growth opportunities while limiting short-term volatility in our cash flows without diluting equity or ownership control”.

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Funding

Digital asset trading technology firm Crossover Markets Raises $12 Million Series A Funding Round Led by Illuminate Financial and DRW Venture Capital

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Crossover to use proceeds to expand its role as the leading ECN in digital assets and bring 24/7 trading to additional asset classes

LONDON, June 26, 2024Crossover Markets, a digital asset technology firm focused on meeting the unique liquidity requirements of institutions, today announced that it has raised $12 million in its Series A funding round led by Illuminate Financial (Illuminate) and DRW Venture Capital (DRW VC). Illuminate and DRW VC join a growing list of strategic investors that includes institutions such as Flow Traders, Laser Digital, Two Sigma, Wintermute, and retail brokers such as Exness, Gate.ioGMO, Pepperstone, Trademax and Think Markets.

“This fundraise comes at a time when institutional market structure is changing in digital assets,” said Brandon Mulvihill, Co-Founder and CEO of Crossover Markets. “Prime brokerage and central clearing models are advancing, creating fungibility and exposing execution venues that hold clients captive. We are honored to welcome strategic shareholders who share our vision and passion to create the world’s leading execution-only trading venue for digital assets. Illuminate brings enormous depth of knowledge across the institutional landscape, and DRW adds significant expertise as one of the largest, multi-asset market makers in the world.”

“Illuminate Financial has been building out a portfolio of institutional grade digital assets infrastructure companies since 2019 as part of our thesis around the convergence of traditional finance and digital asset market structure,” said Mark Beeston, Founder and Managing Partner, Illuminate Financial. “Crossover adds best-in-class execution capability to that portfolio, serving both the immediate and long-term needs of financial institutions that wish to trade digital assets with a future-proof 24/7 low latency infrastructure that traditional markets are increasingly moving towards.”

“DRW VC has a proven track record of supporting early-stage companies committed to delivering market structure innovations both in the traditional and crypto markets,” said Kim Trautmann, Partner at DRW Venture Capital. “Crossover Markets was a natural fit for our portfolio, and we’re excited to support its experienced management team to deliver a best-in-class technology solution for digital asset trading that delivers superior execution while minimizing counterparty risk.”

Crossover also announced the addition of new Board Members. Mark Beeston, Founder and Managing Partner of Illuminate Financial, will join Crossover’s board of directors along with Kevin Wolf, CFO at American Financial Exchange and former CEO of Euronext FX.

Mulvihill added, “Digital assets market structure is experiencing a pivotal change driven by institutional needs and activity. Simultaneously, we are witnessing the early-stage emergence of discussions around 24/7 trading across traditional asset classes. CROSSx is designed to be among the fastest, highest-performance venues in any asset class. More specifically, we developed the platform to bring 24/7 trading, price precision and size precision characteristics to traditional markets where technology is lagging in such areas. Bolstering governance and broadening corporate strategy to address the needs of clients in this evolving landscape were atop our agenda when thinking about Board expansion. Mark and Kevin bring a wealth of experience that spans equities, fixed income, FX, and digital. We are elated to add dynamic leadership by welcoming Mark and Kevin to Crossover.”

Crossover Markets is best known for its execution-only electronic communication network (ECN), CROSSx, an institutional trading venue for digital assets. Its ultra-low-latency and quote-driven matching technology, combined with tailored liquidity and smart order routing, make it a destination for more competitive prices and overall lower trading costs.

Crossover Markets recently reported over $3.15 billion (USD) in notional trading value, 415,450 trades, and over 141 billion quotes processed on CROSSx in Q1 2024. With the added funding, Crossover Markets will continue to invest in its team and technology, further strengthening its position in the market.

About Crossover Markets

Crossover Markets is a digital asset trading technology firm focused on meeting the unique liquidity requirements of institutions in the cryptocurrency markets. CROSSx, the company’s execution-only cryptocurrency Electronic Communication Network (ECN), is powered by the industry’s fastest and most advanced matching engine and includes order logic that enables clients to choose with whom they want to trade. Led by a team with decades of FX trading, prime brokerage technology and artificial intelligence experience, Crossover is ushering the next big wave of institutions in the crypto market.

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Funding

Insure Tech platform Amplify Life Insurance secures $20M Series B funding to offer tax-efficient financial wellness to an underserved market

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amplify funding

SAN FRANCISCO, June 18, 2024 — Amplify Life Insurance, a leading digital platform revolutionizing wealth-building through permanent life insurance, announced today it has secured $20M in a Series B funding round co-led by Crosslink Capital and Anthemis. New investors Moneta Ventures and Evolution Ventures joined the round, with continued support from existing investors Greycroft, Munich Re Ventures, and Foxe Capital.

Founded in 2019, Amplify enables customers to build tax-efficient wealth through life insurance premiums, providing access to the policy’s cash value for any purpose while alive. By focusing on a customer-first experience, Amplify transforms the traditional life insurance model, making valuable permanent life insurance accessible to a broader market, including businesses seeking tax-efficient cash management solutions.

With the capital infusion, Amplify will soon be launching the first in a suite of proprietary products tailored to what customers actually want; these products will not only offer a customer-centric experience, but also strengthen unit economics. The company will also be reinforcing its commitment to strategic work in B2B channels.

Additionally, Amplify has welcomed two new Board Members to help fuel the upcoming growth and development: Michelle Cheung, prior CFO of Next Insurance, and Mark Williamson, prior COO of Masterclass.

“Our unique  approach provides customers with a simple, digital experience while offering more transparent and liquid life insurance wealth products catered towards a younger mass affluent market looking to build long term tax efficient wealth while protecting their families and assets,” said Hanna Wu, founder and CEO of Amplify. “Our expansion highlights the growing demand for innovative and tax-efficient financial solutions that prioritize customer needs and foster flexible long term wealth accumulation.”

“Amplify is disproving the notion that permanent life insurance can only be sold through the traditional agent channel,” said Amy Nauiokas, Founder and CEO at Anthemis. “We believe Amplify is connecting and strengthening the entirety of the life insurance value chain, offering direct access to a previously underserved customer segment.”

“Investing in Amplify represents our confidence in the team’s continued ability to democratize an asset class traditionally available only to the wealthy, making it accessible to underserved younger generations,” said Adoram Gaash, Managing Partner of Moneta VC.

Since its Series A funding, Amplify has achieved 200% YOY growth. The company has also developed a proprietary machine learning model for accurate customer lifetime value prediction and ranking; this advanced customer acquisition algorithm has enabled the acquisition of high-value customers, resulting in significantly higher average premiums per policy compared to industry norms. With end-to-end data capture, Amplify can better manage unit economics and focus on efficiencies in the sales funnel.

About Amplify Life Insurance

Amplify is the first digital permanent life insurance platform offering customers direct access to products where you access tax-efficient investment returns and obtain lifelong protection. It’s founded by serial entrepreneurs with industry and technology expertise looking to modernize the $70B permanent life insurance industry. Amplify provides an AI-enabled educational journey, product recommendation and quoting, and real-time pre-underwriting to help customers learn about plans and customize a policy for their needs. Founded in 2019, Amplify aims to help customers achieve health and financial wellness. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, Amplify is open to all 50 states and has served thousands of customers.

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