Norwegian battery company Freyr has announced the formation of a joint venture in the US together with Koch Strategic Platforms. The aim of the joint venture is to evaluate the development of a US battery cell factory.
The factory will be able to produce cells with an initial annual capacity of 50 GWh based on 24M Technologies’ semi-solid technology, according to Freyr. The cells produced there will be suitable for stationary energy storage systems, but also for the mobility sector with use in electric vehicles.
According to Freyr, the final investment decision on the company’s first US gigafactory will be made in 2022. The factory itself is then expected to be built by 2023. Further details about the planned factory besides the annual capacity of 50 GWh and the use of 24M Technologies’ semi-solid technology are not known.
The US announcement does not come as a surprise: Freyr had already announced in June that it would build up production capacities in North America via a joint venture and had previously concluded a licensing agreement with 24M – but this relates to Freyr’s Norwegian project. The collaboration with Koch Strategic Platforms (KSP) is also not new in principle; KSP is already an investor in Freyr.
“KSP conducted diligence on the FREYR investment beginning in January 2021 when we participated as the largest investor in their PIPE offering,” says Jeremy Bezdek, managing director of KSP and board director of Freyr. “We are confident in the prospects of signing significant commercial offtake agreements in both the energy storage and EV sectors that will enable us to select a Gigafactory location in the U.S. next year.”
For the US expansion, both KSP and Freyr have invested in technology partner 24M. Specifically, KSP has invested $50 million in convertible promissory notes, while Freyr has invested another $20 million. According to Freyr, the licensing agreement, which was finalised after the financing closed, secures the new joint venture’s use of the semi-solid platform “with conditional limited exclusivity”.
In addition to the US expansion, Freyr is planning a battery cell factory in Rana, Norway, with a capacity of 32 GWh. Construction of the first production line has been underway since July and is expected to be operational in the second half of 2022.
Koch Strategic Platforms is a subsidiary of Koch investments Group, founded in 2020 and headquartered in Wichita, Kansas. The company specialises in investing in and promoting growth-focused and innovative companies.
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