Aussie electric vehicle tech company to list on the NASDAQ, with a $1.5 billion valuation

Jane Hunter (centre) and the Tritium team. Source: supplied.

Brisbane-based electric vehicle tech company Tritium is listing on the NASDAQ through a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), in a deal that values the Aussie business at US$1.2 billion ($1.55 billion).

Founded back in 2001 by Dr David Finn, James Kennedy and Dr Paul Sernia, Tritium builds fast-charging technology for electric vehicles (EVs), designed to operate in some of the harshest conditions in the world.

Currently, the business is headed up by chief executive Jane Hunter, a former Boeing executive, who is expected to stay on at the helm once the deal is complete.

In a statement, Hunter said the funds raised through the listing will fuel continued growth of the business, including expanding to three global manufacturing facilities, spending up product development and boosting the sales and service operations teams.

All of that allows the business to meet growing demand for EV technology.

“The accelerated electrification of the transport sector globally is now underway,” she said.

“Our industry is essential to achieving global emission reduction targets both through increased adoption of electric vehicles and the deployment of EVs for mass energy storage technology.”

The agreement marks a “vote of confidence” in Tritium’s technology, vision and market viability, Hunter added.

A SPAC — also sometimes called a ‘blank-cheque company’ is a listed entity that exists for the sole purpose of acquiring a business, thereby offering an alternative route to listing on a stock exchange.

This deal will see Tritium merge with a SPAC called the Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corporation II.

In arrangements like this, the owners of the SPAC will typically retain 20% to 30% of the combined business, and will have their shares tied up for at least 12 months, meaning they can’t immediately cash out.

In this case, the corporation’s chair will also join the board of directors of the combined company.

The deal comes amid a spike in SPAC activity in the US. Closer to home, in February this year serial tech entrepreneur Andrew Grove launched a SPAC on the New York Stock Exchange, with the aim to take an Aussie or Asian company public in the US.

The agreement marks a “vote of confidence” in Tritium’s technology, vision and market viability, Hunter added.

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