SAN DIEGO, USA - Fallbrook Technologies Inc. supplier of the NuVinci continuously variable planetary (CVP) transmission has completed the first close of a $25.4 million (€ 17.6 million) financing round. William G. Klehm III, Fallbrook’s president and CEO (photo) said:
“This investment will enable us to continue the commercialization of our NuVinci continuously variable planetary (CVP) transmission and to accelerate new technological developments”, said William G. Klehm III, Fallbrook’s president and CEO. “This is our first venture-financed round. Previous financing for our company was done through private equity investments. Closing a $25 million finance round in this economy is a huge validation of NuVinci technology.”
US investor NGEN III, LP provided $10 million while Dutch Robeco contributed an additional $10 million from its Clean Tech Private Equity funds.
“We are convinced that NuVinci technology, already commercialized for bicycles, can revolutionize a wide range of cleantech market segments,” said Steven E. Parry, managing director of investor NGEN. “Investing in Fallbrook reflects our commitment to help companies who are leading the way to a more sustainable energy future.” NGEN provides enterprising capital for clean technology companies. Founded in 2001, NGEN is a pioneering investor in the cleantech sector, investing in companies that offer products and services that positively affect the environment.
Keimpe Keuning, senior investment manager at Robeco added that, “NuVinci technology has an enormous potential to add value in the bicycle, electric vehicle and automotive industries. Our Clean Tech Private Equity fund is fully dedicated to the clean technologies. Because of the technological advantages of Fallbrook this investment fits very well within our strategy.
” Robeco, part of the Dutch Rabobank Group, offers investment products and services to institutional and private investors worldwide. It has €114 billion in assets under management. The product range encompasses equity and fixed-income investments, money-market funds, responsible investing and alternative investments, including private equity, hedge funds and structured products. The Rabobank is one of the few retail banks with the highest credit ratings from Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.
Under terms of the agreement, both Mr. Parry and Mr. Keuning will join Fallbrook’s board of directors.
NuVinci technology is the most practical, economical and universally adaptable continuously variable transmission for bicycles and motor-powered vehicles and machines. The NuVinci CVP uses a set of rotating and tilting balls positioned between the input and output components of a transmission. Tilting the balls changes their contact diameters and varies the speed ratio.
Since coming into the market in late 2006 the market acceptance and penetration for the NuVinci CVP has increased steadily, particularly on the European bike and electric vehicle industries. In 2007 NuVinci won several major awards, including the prestigious R&D 100 Award as one of the year’s most technologically significant products. In the Netherlands the Batavus bike equipped with NuVinci was elected bike of the year while the NuVinci drivetrain was given the prestigious iF Design Eurobike Gold 2008 Award.
Originally formed with an IP licensing business model, Fallbrook, in March 2008, also became a manufacturing and marketing company for certain applications. MTD Products Inc physically manufactures the NuVinci CVP for bicycles and light electric vehicles in its Leitchfield, US facility under agreement with Fallbrook.