VMXI is an environmental service company with over 20 years of experience serving the automotive industry. VMXI already manages battery recycling for their clients but must send the collected batteries downstream through one company and on to another before the materials are ready for sale to manufacturers. VMXI also envisions refurbishing any batteries suitable for reuse while recycling those at the true end of life. They are planning to develop a facility to test, refurbish and dismantle batteries with robust shredding and separation capability and hydrometallurgy technology to recover recyclable materials, especially the rare earth elements so critical to many battery chemistries. VMXI’s workplan for their accelerator experience included defining their ideal position in the battery recycling value chain, conceptualizing the facility, developing revenue and cost model proforma, and conducting a project risk assessment.
“We are so lucky to be a part of NextCycle Michigan,” said VMXI CEO Vickie Lewis. She continued,
“The Recycling Supply Chain Accelerator helped us find all the data we needed to design a program that would be profitable and meet the demand for diversion and circularity. The support we got from NextCycle Michigan started with the office hours and classes, then continued with sitting down with our team: they gave us a team that had regularly scheduled meetings where we told them where we were in the project and what assistance we needed. Whatever assistance we needed; they would provide that.
Then we went to the pitch showcase, and I left that event with contacts of folks that were interested in investing in the VMXI project. And the attention we got for the program led to being selected for the Ernst and Young Winning Women program. Winning Women, in turn, gave me an opportunity to meet other investors. I’m part of innovation. I’m part of developing a real battery recycling system. And none of this was happening before VMXI participated in the NextCycle RSC Accelerator.”