Toyota & Panasonic battery joint venture to launch in April
The planned battery joint venture between Toyota and Panasonic will be called Prime Planet Energy & Solutions. According to Panasonic, the JV, in which Toyota will hold 51% and Panasonic 49%, is to be established on 1 April 2020.
The goal of the joint venture, announced last year, is to develop new batteries with improved prismatic cells for pure electric cars. Also, work will be carried out on solid-state batteries. Prime Planet Energy & Solutions will have two corporate headquarters, one in Tokyo and one in Kansai. The number of employees is estimated at around 5,100, of which 2,400 will work at a subsidiary in China.
Toyota will not only hold a majority stake of 51 per cent in the joint venture but according to the announcement will also provide the “representative director” and president – namely the manager Hiroaki Koda. Of the four other directors, two will come from each shareholder, but together with Koda, Toyota also has a majority stake.
But Prime Planet is not only to supply Toyota, “but general and reliable” customers with batteries. In earlier reports, Japanese car manufacturers Mazda, Daihatsu, Subaru and possibly Honda were mentioned as potential customers. The joint venture will “develop competitive, low-cost batteries that are safe and of excellent quality and performance (in terms of capacity, power, durability, etc.)”.
The Japanese groups did not provide any further information in the brief notification. The exact location of the China subsidiary and the planned production capacities are therefore not yet known or officially confirmed.