Disposable Batteries Power Innovation in Emerging Applications
CEO, Thin Battery Technologies
Question: What do you get when you combine an
environmentally friendly application that meets the needs of
several emerging markets, with technology spun off from a Fortune
500 industry leader, all delivered at disruptively low production
Answer: A potential entrepreneurial home run.
Speaking at OVA's May luncheon, Thin Battery Solutions CEO
Gary Johnson explained how his company's disposable, low-cost,
printable carbon-zinc batteries might just meet the demands of a
huge and growing global market. "We're not using any exotic
materials, which makes us both low-cost and an easily disposable
product," Johnson noted. "But the secret sauce is how to make it
printable at a very low cost."
The company, founded in 2002, is the result of a spinoff from
Eveready Battery. Private investors, led by Cleveland-based Early
Stage Partners, acquired the intellectual property, which included
five years of research and development in the Eveready labs. The
company has been working toward commercializing the proprietary
process ever since. Three years ago, Thin Battery commenced
limited production. The batteries are printed by subcontractors.
The target markets include such booming applications as smart
cards, transdermal drug-delivery patches and RFID tags. The
company also has a test project currently in production for a
theme park, testing a wrist band that would help track customers
around the park. Johnson passed around to the audience samples of
the wafer-thin batteries, which are about the size of a credit
Johnson previously led Sawyer Research Products, a
Cleveland-based international technology company, to a
market-leading position. He holds a bachelors degree in electrical
engineering and a master's in industrial administration from
The CEO admitted that the company has experienced some
challenges in recruiting senior executive talent to Northeast
Ohio. It identified two top industry performers, one in New York
and another in Philadelphia, that it wanted to recruit. Neither
was interested in relocating to Ohio, but the company hired them
anyway, and both now work remotely.
To date, Thin Battery has raised $6.2 million in Series A
funding. The organizational goal is simple: revenues of $100
million in five to seven years. Said Johnson: "We expect our gross
margins will be in the realm of specialty chemicals--60% and
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June 13, 2008
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Inventor Designs Personal Power
Tremont Electric has designed a personal power generator
that can convert energy from a person walking or running into four
watts of power, which can be used to power such devices as an
iPod. "I'm using this device on a daily basis, by jogging and
powering my iPod," said founder Aaron LeMieux.
Tremont Electric is seeking $300,000 to take the company to the
For more information, contact Aaron LeMieux, at
call 440-821-1889, or go to
See complete presentation (PPT).
ICI Connects Power Substations to the
Along with its strategic partner, Cisco Systems, Akron-based
ICI Networks, LLC delivers Internet networking capacity
services to the power substation market. Government mandates to
better protect the nation's infrastructure are expected to create
larger demand for these services.
For more information, contact Brian Casto, at
call 330-665-2928, or go to
AHRR Creates Emotionally Charged
American Hot Rod Racer allows children and their families to
design, assemble, customize and race their own toy cars. It has a
simple goal: to become the category killer in toy cars. It now has
a single retail location. The company is in the process of raising
$2.5 million to fund a number of additional locations.
For more information, contact Rick Maicki, at
firstname.lastname@example.org, call 216-269-5513, or go to
See complete presentation (PPS).
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