MotoCzysz raising $6M for EV market push
By Christina Williams, Sustainable Business Oregon
Sustainable Business Oregon
It's been a seminal year for MotoCzysz LLC.
The low-profile Portland company shanghaied the attention of the motorcycle-racing world this summer with its remarkable electric racing bike and a high-profile win on a European track.
Popular Science magazine awarded two-year-old MotoCzysz one of its "Best of 2010" innovation awards.
The company inked a deal with a global automotive parts company, Remy International, to co-develop an electric drive system with applications throughout the electric vehicle industry.
And last month MotoCzysz CEO Michael Czysz went to Shenzhen, China, for the World Electric Vehicle Symposium and Exposition where he met with a number of potential customers from all over the world.
Now Czysz is raising $6 million in venture capital, an investment he plans to close in January, to grow enough to keep up with the interest his eponymous company has generated.
"People want motorcycle entrepreneurs to stay in the garage," said Czysz.
The garage, at least one with any spec of dirt on the floor, is invisible at MotoCzysz's gleaming Northeast Portland headquarters.
Propped on a stand behind a glass wall of a conference room sits the MotoCzysz E1pc, the motorcycle that won the IT Zero race on the Isle of Man in June. Next to it is the bike that attempted the same race in 2009, with disappointing results.
"I came back brokenhearted and pissed," Czysz said. "And we turned 180 degrees on the design, built everything from the ground up."
In the process Czysz contacted Remy International about modifying some of the company's electric motor components to meet his needs. The partnership grew into the announcement in August that MotoCzysz and Remy would partner on an electric drive, which launched formally last month at the electric car show in China.
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