Gridtential Inc., an innovator in low-cost, high-performance energy storage technologies, announced today that it has appointed John Barton, former President of Global Asset Management for SunEdison, as Chief Executive Officer of Gridtential. The company also announced that Bob Gruenstern, former Johnson Controls Global Vice President for Product and Advanced Engineering, joined its Technical Advisory Board. Both Barton and Gruenstern bring decades of critical operations and product development expertise as Gridtential accelerates plans for the commercialization of its patented Silicon Joule® battery technology.On the heels of its recent $11 million Series B financing round, coming from four strategic partners and 1955 Capital, Gridtential welcomes Barton as it eyes global energy storage market opportunities and new applications in 48-volt electric-hybrid vehicle applications. With over 20 years of operating and product development experience in both public corporations and startups, Barton will guide the company as it enters a phase of manufacturing, scaling and battery manufacturing partner support to meet growing global demand for advanced energy storage in the automotive, backup power, grid solutions, and mobility industries. Christiaan Beekhuis has stepped down as CEO to pursue other opportunities in the renewable energy and software space.
“John’s track record and experience in the sustainable energy sector and across cost-sensitive global supply chains will be real assets to Gridtential, and his deep operations experience will help our battery manufacturing partners move to high volume manufacturing of our Silicon Joule technology,” said Ray Kubis, Chairman of Gridtential. “I want to thank Chris for his leadership over the last five years in developing our team and advancing the potential of our technology. We wish him well in his next venture.”
As Barton takes the helm as CEO, Bob Gruenstern will join Gridtential’s Technology Advisory Board, providing valuable engineering and product innovation insights to the Gridtential team. A lifelong engineer at Johnson Controls, Gruenstern acted as Director of Engineering for 16 years before becoming global Vice President of Product and Advanced Engineering where he oversaw the research and development of JCI’s core product innovations. Today, Bob is a leader at Interstate Batteries, the world’s largest battery distributor, where he guides product assurance and technology.
“Bob is one of the most respected technology leaders in our industry, and we are thrilled to have him counsel our team. I’d like to thank Interstate Batteries for supporting Bob’s appointment so he can aid the further development of one of the most promising technology platforms in our industry,” continued Kubis.
Gruenstern emphasized: “Gridtential’s architecture breakthrough leverages new material advances that simply didn’t exist until now, and that positions it, along with its growing roster of lead battery manufacturers, to satisfy the market pull we’re seeing for high voltage applications like electric-hybrid vehicles. These types of technology are a substantial extension of lead, giving it new capabilities to compete with lithium batteries on performance, while retaining key advantages in safety, recyclability and cost.”
“After my two decades of product development, high-volume manufacturing and solar, I believe we’re seeing the same intersection of technology advances, increases in performance, and cost reductions in energy storage that catapulted those industries to the next level,” said John Barton, CEO of Gridtential. “This convergence is already transforming existing markets and enabling new ones, like the shift from 12-volt to 48-volt in hybrid cars, and with the leverage of an existing world-class global supply chain, Gridtential is setting new cost and performance standards for high voltage energy storage.”