Japan’s SoftBank Vision Fund has invested $110m in a Series B funding round for renewable energy storage products manufacturer Energy Vault. The funding round is Vision Fund’s first investment in energy storage.

The investment will be used by Energy Vault to fast-track growth and speed-up the deployment of its transformative utility-scale energy storage technology on a global scale.

SoftBank Investment Advisers managing partner Akshay Naheta said: “Energy Vault solves a long-standing and complex problem of how to store renewable energy at scale.

“The company’s integration of proven technologies with 21st-century material science and machine vision software provides a solution that reshapes the unit economics of renewable energy while being restorative to the environment.

“Energy Vault is highly complementary to SoftBank’s existing energy portfolio and we are pleased to further the company’s global development.”

An Idealab portfolio company, Energy Vault has developed utility-scale software-driven gravity-based energy storage system.

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By GlobalData

Inspired by water movement and gravity-based pumped hydro plants, the technology makes use of custom-made cylindrical blocks instead of water.

SoftBank Investment Advisers partner Andreas Hansson will also join the board of directors of Energy Vault.

Energy Vault co-founder and CEO Robert Piconi said: “As we pursue our mission to enable renewable energy to replace fossil fuels 24 hours a day, we’re thrilled to partner with SoftBank Vision Fund as we expand our global presence.

“The Vision Fund shares our passion to combat climate change through innovation in energy storage technologies and, with its support as a strategic partner, Energy Vault is well-positioned to meet the large and currently unmet demand for sustainable and economical energy storage worldwide.”