Billionaire Rybolovlev is aware of the collapse of the "Swiss Tesla", but is still interested in energy storages

The investment of the owner of FC Monaco in Alevo, the developer of energy storage systems based on lithium batteries, was estimated at $36 million.
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The ex-owner of "Uralkali" Dmitry Rybolovlev, who invested in Swiss Alevo, is aware of the bankruptcy of the company. About this Forbes said representative of a businessman. "We must accept the fact that it is very difficult to transfer new technologies in the field of creating batteries from the laboratory to commercial production. We will continue to monitor the development of the energy storage market to see if we can use the experience gained in the future to find an effective solution, "he said. On the question of how much the billionaire lost on this investment, the interlocutor Forbes did not answer.

The day before, on August 22, Alevo, engaged in the development of industrial energy storage systems based on lithium batteries, announced the bankruptcy of Alevo USA and Alevo Manufacturing. A corresponding statement was filed with the North Carolina Court.

"The decision is associated with significant difficulties in launching commercial production and lack of funding to continue working," the company said, explaining that its own revenue was not enough to continue operating activities. "Alevo was actively looking for new sources of funding for current activities and further development," the statement stresses.

Alevo Group was founded in 2009 in Valais by the Norwegian businessman Josten Eikeland. The company was engaged in the development of energy storage systems using GridBank technology: it was planned that the batteries would store the energy generated by thermal or hydroelectric power stations and be able to be charged almost endlessly without loss of efficiency.

Rybolovlev, according to L'Hebdo, invested 35 million francs ($ 36 million) in the company. Vladislav Baumgertner, the former head of Uralkali, took over as CEO of the company, and Alevo's board of directors includes former executive director of Uralkali Kuzma Marchuk and Rybolovlev's adviser Mikhail Sazonov. A representative of the businessman confirmed to Forbes that he had invested in a Swiss company, without naming the amount of investment.

Alevo promised to "make a revolution" in the global battery market, and in the French press it was described as "Swiss Tesla." Nevertheless, promises were not to be realized, the production of Alevo batteries, scheduled for 2014, never began.

Alevo was not the first unsuccessful project of Eikeland. His first computer company, Telecomputing, went bankrupt in the early 2000s, and the TMGI magnesium producer in 2008. Against the businessman himself a case was filed of non-payment of taxes.

As the journalists of Dagens Naeringsliv found out, in 2011, drug baron Gyermund Kappelen became one of the first investors of his current project, who bought more than 14,000 shares of Alevo for 680,000 francs (6 million kroons at the then rate). A representative of a Russian businessman did not comment on this story.