Zap&Go are developing a solution to the problem of slow charging batteries, encountered when using everyday appliances, devices and vehicles powered by lithium. They call it Carbon-Ion (or C-Ion) in contrast to Lithium-ion (Li-ion).

Zap&Go completed its latest SyndicateRoom round in January 2016, and raised its maximum capacity of £988,090 – a staggering 399% of the funds required. This Lift Round has enabled Zap&Go to work on upgraded prototypes of their ultra-fast charging battery booster.

The company first raised finance on SyndicateRoom in May 2015, to the tune of £368,534, to help get the concept into development.

5-minute Charger

The story

Our reliance on mobiles is growing exponentially: an estimated 20 billion devices are expected to be in use by 2020. But what use is a mobile device when it’s plugged into a wall? Zap&Go charges your devices on the go, and it needs only five minutes to get going.

Zap&Go provides a portable source of power. While such technologies exist, charging times are equal to that of a normal phone charger. Using supercapacitor technology and graphene, Zap&Go takes just five minutes to charge, so that you can keep your devices at full-battery on the go after a minimal wait.

May 2015 funding round

Zap&Go raised £368,534 in May 2015, with plans to scale its technology into other markets: initially focussing on home appliances such as power tools and vacuum cleaners, but with the potential to reach the Electric Vehicle market and even inside the mobile phone.

January 2016 funding round

Zap&Go raised £988,090 in January 2016, with its product at prototype stage, and was awarded 2015 Product of the Year at the London Innovators Awards.

Founder and CEO Stephen Voller is an experienced business leader and a recognised authority on energy storage technologies. He is the inventor of Carbon-Ion and he founded ZapGo Limited in 2013 to produce the next generation of energy storage devices based on this technology platform, with four core values: to be faster charging, safer, longer lasting and more recyclable than lithium batteries. Stephen has taken several technology businesses through concept, design and then into production.

Where are they now?

May 2017 update

In May Zap&Go exhibited a range of products at IDTechEx in Berlin: a cordless drill, a cordless vacuum cleaner, a scooter and a phone charger, all capable of charging up fully in less than 5 minutes. A fifth prototype on display was ZapStart, which is able to start a car when the battery has run down. It works by ‘harvesting’ the remaining power in a battery that’s far too flat to turn the engine. CEO Stephen Voller gave a presentation at the event outlining Zap&Go’s strategy to enable a new generation of fast charging devices.

The company has grown rapidly and now employs 19 people at its base on the Harwell Campus, Oxford, with another two commercial people in the USA and a representative office in Shanghai. Investment Director Simon Harris has just returned from his sixth trip to China in 15 months, where Zap&Go has a number of investors. The company is looking to place manufacturing contracts with Chinese battery makers capable of adapting their process to Zap&Go’s new nano-carbon technology. The intended market launch is Q1 2018.

Zap&Go was listed in the Red Herring Europe 100 and Global 100 lists in 2016 and again in the Europe 100 in 2017.

In the media

The lead investor

Akash Gupta is a serial investor with stakes in over a dozen tech start-ups.

'I was one of the two Lead Investors into Zap&Go in April 2015 when their technology was in its infancy. I am very pleased to note how far they have come in just two years. What they are doing is a lot more than most tech plays: they are developing and integrating a new generation of materials for energy storage – a step of enormous significance in an increasingly cordless and hand-held world.'

Allen Whittaker is an electronics engineer and a veteran of silcon powerhouse Intel.

'I have personally invested in projects that I have judged to be strategic to fundamental parts of our future. One such is fibre optics, which was crucial to the growth of the World Wide Web. Bookham Technology was a major contributor to the web when David McTurk, now Zap&Go’s COO, was running its operations. Another is a major agricultural project in Africa: producing food products that are in world demand will prove to be a major benefit to the local economy, and is forecast to be a financial success.

Now I believe that the world market for rechargeable devices will be reshaped by the technology developed by Zap&Go. This project also renews my association with David McTurk and is fundamentally why I and a group of my friends have invested alongside him in the business.'

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