Northvolt considers hitting the stock market
The Swedish battery cell manufacturer Northvolt wants to go public. The intended listing is to take place in 2022 or 2023 and bring the company a valuation of 20 to 30 billion euros.
This was reported by Manager Magazin with reference to company circles. Northvolt is currently building a battery cell plant in Skellefteå, Sweden, which is also known as Gigafactory 1 of the Volkswagen Group. Although Northvolt operates the plant itself, the premium cells planned there, whose cathodes will have a high nickel content, are primarily intended for Volkswagen subsidiaries Audi and Porsche.
Northvolt is now apparently seeking an IPO for the capital-intensive development of cell production. Recently, the start-up has already completed several capital increases, which have reflected great investor interest. In June, Volkswagen announced that it had invested a further 620 million US dollars (around 500 million euros) in its battery partner. Volkswagen’s additional investment was part of a total of 2.75 billion US dollars (around 2.3 billion euros) in a new financing round for the Swedish battery company.
With the new investment in June, Volkswagen keeps its share of around 20 per cent in Northvolt constant. The Wolfsburg-based group had joined the Swedish company in the summer of 2019 with an initial 20 per cent stake, as it said at the time. According to Manager Magazin, the largest shareholder besides Volkswagen is the investment bank Goldman Sachs.
In the course of the latest capital increase, Northvolt announced that it would expand its gigafactory Northvolt Ett in Skellefteå from 40 GWh annual production capacity to 60 GWh. On-site production is scheduled to start in 2023. Officially, this is being done “to respond to higher demand from customers” – the demand is likely to come mainly from VW. With the announced increase in production capacity in Skellefteå, however, it is also clear that Northvolt will be able to serve more customers with the factory.
So far, the factory there has been designed for 14 GWh; Northvolt had previously publicised plans for 32 GWh. Even that would not have been enough for the 40 GWh that the VW Group alone wants to purchase from Northvolt step by step. If the 60 GWh are realised, a third of the cell production could be for other customers – for Volvo or BMW, for example. The Munich-based group also has a small stake in Northvolt. Manager Magazin” writes that the capacities are already booked up for years.
Meanwhile, Northvolt is already planning further gigafactories. These are to be set up in cooperation with Volvo and also in Germany, although in the latter case the planning is still at a very early stage.
manager-magazin.de (in German)