Discover Energy announces new CEO and Korean acquisition

Discover Energy announced the acquisition of manufacturing facility iQ Power Asia, which makes flooded batteries with the anti-stratification technology Mixtech, on November 17, along with the appointment of Steve Nam (pictured left) as CEO.

After months of financial restructuring, Canada-based Discover bought the Korean plant from iQ Power Licensing, the Swiss company that developed the mixing technology for flooded batteries.

The Korean plant has been re-named the Discover Mixtech Manufacturing Company. Discover Energy co-founder Steve Nam becomes the new company’s CEO.

While mixing technology is not completely new, the company says other electrolyte-mixing systems only partially mix the electrolyte, whereas Mixtech performs an entire 360° circulation.

The device has no moving parts and uses the driving dynamics of the vehicle to achieve the mixing results by using hydrostatic pressure differences from driving movements in the battery chambers.

The more a flooded battery is charged and discharged, the more stratification becomes a problem — which was eliminated with AGM batteries. However they are much more expensive and heat sensitive, which prompted designers to come up with EFBs.

A source close to Discover said one large carmaker had already been using the Mixtech batteries in two of its models for a year, and that other OEMs had been in talks with the company.

The facility in Korea was set to open a second production line, the source said.

“The acquisition of the manufacturing facility secures the supply of automotive and commercial batteries to sustain the global success of its Discover-branded Mixtech product line,” the company said.

Also pictured are Darwin Sauer (middle), co-founder of Discover Energy, and Bob Sullivan, CEO of iQ Power Licensing.

The source also said further details would be released at the Advanced Automotive Battery Conference in Mainz, Germany, next January.

At the end of September David Norman joined the firm as director for product and business development with a remit to introduce Discover’s Advanced Energy Systems products — lithium ion batteries — to energy storage resellers and to expand Discover’s solar market footprint globally.

Previously, Norman spent the last 17 years at Schneider Electric and Xantrex Technology in senior global positions.