Novacium SAS Awarded € 90,000 (C$ 131,000.00) Grant Towards Work on its Engineered SiOx Anode Battery Material

by Team HPQ

MONTREAL, Canada — HPQ Silicon Inc. (“HPQ” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: HPQ) (OTCQB: HPQFF) (FRA: O08), is pleased to inform shareholders that its France-based affiliate company NOVACIUM SAS (“Novacium”) has been awarded a French Tech Emergence Grant of € 90,000 (C$ 131,000).

The grant, administrated by the French Bank of Public Investments (BPI), is part of the French Government’s strategy to promote projects considered “deep tech” for startups like Novacium. Novacium’s project proposal to BPI concentrated on enhancing the entire value chain of highly engineered SiOx-based anode materials for batteries.

“Novacium’s recognition by BPI as an innovative project with significant industrial impact underscores the value of our work,” said Mr. Jed Kraiem PhD, COO of Novacium. “With the upcoming results from our ongoing engineered SiOx battery tests, we plan to seek more BPI deep tech financing, potentially up to €2 million, to advance our project to a pre-commercial stage.”

BPI approved the grant following a rigorous selection process which involves having its sector experts validate the Novacium’s deep-tech characteristics and the project’s innovativeness combined with its industrial impact in France and worldwide.

“We are thrilled with Novacium’s recent achievement and the BPI grant,” said Mr. Bernard Tourillon, President and CEO of HPQ Silicon Inc. and NOVACIUM SAS. “It further confirms that the need for engineered SiOx-based anode materials is a global necessity and highlights the Novacium/HPQ collaborative efforts in advancing cutting-edge silicon-based battery technologies.”

A major trend in the lithium battery industry is the introduction of small amounts (between 5% and 10%) of silicon oxide (SiOx) based additives into graphite composite electrodes. This is due to the fact that pure graphite anodes have essentially achieved their maximum performance in terms of energy density [1].

Silicon is the most promising candidate that can drastically improve the anode performance (more than 10 times), but its industrial application is very limited due to unresolved issues related to volumetric expansion. The use of engineered SiOx materials, instead of pure silicon, enables overcoming this problem and increases battery capacity without significant degradation of the battery’s lifetime.

This new reality is driving a surge in demand for advanced silicon-containing anode materials. As of 2023, this market is valued between US$1.1 billion [2] and US$2.7 billion [3]. Its growth prospects indicate a potential demand of 300,000 tons by 2030, estimated at US$15 billion [4], according to one source, and US$ 131.6 billion in 2033 according to another source [5].

It’s important to highlight that silicon-based materials for Li-ion batteries currently make up a relatively small portion, accounting for less than 10%, of the global demand for graphite, which is primarily used in the manufacture of anode materials for Li-ion batteries. This graphite market is estimated to be worth US$25 billion in 2023 [6].

“Today’s news, which can be considered a big milestone, validates our strategic partnership with Novacium and strengthens our collective position in the global market for reliable, sustainable and innovatively engineered SiOx battery materials,” added Mr. Tourillon.

[1] The Royal Society of Chemistry 2020 Sustainable Energy Fuels, 2020, 4, 5387–5416
[2] QY Research, SNE Research, Shinhan Securities / NBM June 2023 Deck page 11
[3] The global silicon anode battery market is likely to be valued at US$ 2.7 billion in 2023. From Future Market Insights Global and Consulting Pvt. Ltd.
[4] QY Research, SNE Research, Shinhan Securities / NBM June 2023 Deck page 11
[5] According to Future Market Insights, the global silicon anode battery market is Estimated to Reach US$ 131.6 Billion by 2033.
[6] Based on the analysis by Fact.MR, the global graphite market is valued to be US$ 25.9 billion in 2023 and it is expected to grow at a CAGR o 8,5% to reach US$ 58,6 billion by the end of 2023. Link to source

HPQ Silicon is a Quebec-based TSX Venture Exchange Tier 1 Industrial Issuer. With the support of world-class technology partners PyroGenesis Canada and NOVACIUM SAS, the company is developing new green processes crucial to make the critical materials needed to reach net zero emissions.