Battery Recycler Li-Cycle Raises $350 Million Loan from US Energy Department

The loan has been released under the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing program


Toronto-based Li-Cycle Holdings Corporation, a lithium-ion battery recycler, has entered into a conditional commitment for a $375 million loan from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) through its Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) program.

Li-Cycle’s development of the first commercial hydrometallurgical resource recovery facility in North America, located near Rochester, New York, has received a significant endorsement through the conditional commitment. The commitment is the first of its kind from the DOE ATVM program for a sustainable pure-play battery materials recycling company.

The endorsement follows the DOE’s thorough technical, market, financial, and legal due diligence. It marks another important milestone for Li-Cycle and the lithium-ion battery recycling industry, which has the main support of the ATVM program.

The first-of-its-kind commercial facility in North America is poised to become a major domestic source of battery-grade materials, such as lithium, nickel, and cobalt.

It is currently projected that the loan will be finalized in Q2 2023.

The loan will have a maximum term of 12 years from the date of financial closure, and interest on the loan will be based on the 10-year U.S. treasury rates at the time of each advance.

Speaking on the development, Ajay Kochhar, Co-founder, president, and CEO at Li-Cycle, said, “We are delighted to receive the first conditional commitment from the DOE LPO for a resource recovery facility, as it further supports our efforts to create a sustainable domestic supply chain of battery-grade materials in the U.S. and to grow American jobs.”

“The Rochester Hub is a cornerstone asset for Li-Cycle and its stakeholders and will contribute to the clean energy economy. As a sustainable pure-play battery material recycling company, we expect the Rochester Hub will position Li-Cycle as a leading domestic producer of recycled battery-grade materials for accelerating electrification demand to address climate change and secure energy independence,” Kochhar added.

“The loan of $375 million will now supercharge Li-Cycle here in Rochester, with 270 good-paying jobs, to become one of America’s largest suppliers of recycled materials for batteries. Last year, I stood alongside Li-Cycle’s powerhouse workforce and promised I would push to deliver federal funding to spark more growth, and now thanks to the investments I secured in the Inflation Reduction Act, Rochester will help power America’s drive to lead in battery technology,” said Senator Charles Schumer.

With a processing capacity of up to 35,000 tons of black mass per year, equivalent to around 90,000 tons of lithium-ion battery material or 18 GWh of lithium-ion batteries, the Rochester Hub has been designed for optimal efficiency. When fully operational, the facility is projected to produce up to 8,500 tons of lithium carbonate, 48,000 tons of nickel sulfate, and 7,500 tons of cobalt sulfate on an annual basis.

In May last year, Li-Cycle had completed a $50 million aggregate investment in common shares from LG Energy Solutions and LG Chem.

The company also entered into a deal with Glencore, a commodity trading and mining company, to supply manufacturing scrap and end-of-life lithium-ion batteries.