Faurecia invests in TC thermal tech firm

AUBURN HILLS — Faurecia, the French auto supplier with its North American headquarters in Auburn Hills, announced an investment in Traverse City-based Promethient, a manufacturer of thermal control technologies.

Promethient designs and produces Thermavance, a climate control technology that is adaptable to a variety of industries, including transportation, medical devices, clothing, and more. The technology combines advanced materials and electronics to heat and cool through conductive heat transfer, offering significantly higher efficiency than current convective technology.

“After having partnered last year with Mahle, our investment in Promethient represents a new important step in the development of innovative thermal management solutions,” said Nik Endrud, vice president for strategy and innovation at Faurecia Seating. “As the cockpit of the future will allow multiple use cases and be occupant centric, technologies for thermal comfort and climate control management integrated into the seating system will facilitate individual and personalized thermal management for all occupants.”

Added Promethient CEO William Myers: “Our Thermavance system personalizes climate control while saving energy. These are key considerations for automakers and are especially important in the growing electric vehicle segment. The partnership with Faurecia represents a significant step for us within the automotive industry and clearly demonstrates the value of Thermavance within the marketplace.”

This investment is made by Faurecia Ventures, which advances Faurecia’s innovation strategy by identifying, incubating and investing in start-ups with relevant technologies for sustainable mobility.

Founded in 1997, Faurecia has 109,000 employees at 290 locations in 35 countries. It posted 2017 sales of €20.2 billion. More at www.faurecia.com.

Promethient was founded in 2012 by Charles Cauchy, a veteran of the solid state heating and cooling industry. He holds a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering and physics from Evergreen State College in Olympia, Wash., and continued studies in fluid dynamics, solar energy engineering and printed electronics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Western Michigan University. He was previously CTO and CEO of another Traverse City thermoelectrics firm, Tellurex Corp.

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