Here’s the 13-page pitch deck that the mining startup claiming it can solve a crisis for electric-car makers used to raise a $16 million Series A from Playground Global

Ideon cofounders Gary Agnew and Doug Schouten
  • Automakers are desperate to secure the supplies they need to make electric vehicles.
  • The mining startup Ideon just raised $16 million from Playground Global.
  • Read the exclusive 13-page deck Ideon used to pitch investors.

A budding startup that says it will help solve automakers’ biggest problem in the coming years — the pending electric-vehicle raw-materials crisis — just raised a $16 million Series A from Playground Global.

The Canadian startup Ideon Technologies was founded in 2013 to help car companies get the materials, like lithium, nickel, and cobalt, that they need to make good on their $515 billion EV ambitions. It’s looking to capitalize on a huge opportunity as automakers and startups alike are desperate to power their EVs, bolster their market share, and gain a leg up on their competition.

The production of the minerals needed for batteries must grow by nearly 500% by 2050 to keep pace with demand, according to the World Bank Group.

“Materials security has certainly jumped to the forefront,” Brian Collie, a Boston Consulting Group managing partner and the global leader of its automotive and mobility practice, told Insider last month.

General Motors said in July it had lined up the battery supplies needed to build 1 million EVs a year in North America by the end of 2025. Ford said it had what it needed to make 600,000 vehicles by late next year. And Tesla is evaluating a lithium-hydroxide refining plant on the Texas Gulf Coast.

“Those auto manufacturers absolutely want to secure supply,” Gary Agnew, Ideon’s CEO and cofounder, said. “They also want to ensure that the minerals that they are putting into the EV batteries are sourced in a sustainable way and an environmentally conscious way.”

Ideon’s “subsurface-detection” system creates 3D maps of new mines and old mines, making it easier to locate deposits. For one thing, that limits environmental impact by limiting the need to rip apart the planet. 

It also lets mining companies make more of existing sites, limiting the expense and time of bringing a mine online, which can take up to 10 years, Bruce Leak, a Playground General partner, said. “We can actually get more minerals more quickly out of the existing mines by knowing where those adjacent deposits are,” Leak added.

Ideon works with some of the world’s mining giants, such as BHP and Glencore, who then supply the materials to battery makers.

Ideon, which is a spinoff from Canada’s national particle-accelerator lab, raised a $1 million seed from Canadian investors in July 2021. Playground Global, an early-stage venture-capital firm in Palo Alto, California, has also backed companies like Nauto, Leaf Logistics, and Universal Hydrogen.  

Agnew shared the pitch deck Ideon used to pitch its vision. Confidential information has been redacted.

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