French battery manufacturer Forsee Power has opened its production site in Poitiers. The Poitiers plant has five assembly lines for e-bus batteries with a production capacity of 1 GWh, equivalent to more than 2,500 bus batteries per year.
Or, put another way, more than 76 per cent of the current electric bus market in Europe. As reported, 2021 saw 3,282 electric bus registrations. So with five assembly lines in Poitiers, Forsee is poised for future growth. Of course, the company does not supply three-quarters of electric buses in Europe. The French company supplies Wrightbus and Iveco, for example. Forsee still has to share the market with other companies such as Akasol and Blue Solutions.
However, the French are thinking even further ahead and anticipate a sustained sales boom for electric buses: By 2027, the annual capacity in Poitiers is to be increased to 4 GWh. This would correspond to batteries for 10,000 electric buses based on the same calculations. Forsee has calculated 400 kWh per vehicle, which seems a realistic average.
More than 200 people are currently employed at the site. The 15,000-square-meter facility is home not only to production but also to maintenance, quality, industrialisation, logistics and R&D. The employment will be in 2027 with four times the production, Forsee does not specify in the communication.
However, Forsee did not build the plant from scratch but moved to a wasteland. The site was acquired by the Greater Poitiers agglomeration in 2018 and subsequently renovated. Forsee also built a new warehouse building.
“This inauguration marks a symbolic step in the company’s industrial and commercial development,” says Christophe Gurtner, chairman and CEO of Forsee Power. “I would like to thank the State, the New Aquitaine region, the Greater Poitiers agglomeration and the Revitalization Fund for their support, which has enabled us to reindustrialise a site with great potential. Thanks to them, we now have a new, modern, automated industrial tool that will allow us to meet our customers’ expectations better.”
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