After the British chemical company Johnson Matthey surprisingly announced its withdrawal from the business with battery materials for the automotive industry in November 2021, parts of the business are now being sold to EV Metals Group and Nano One Materials.
According to Johnson Matthey, the Australian EV Metals Group is acquiring Johnson Matthey’s assets at the Battery Technology Centre in Oxford and the Battery Technology Centre and Pilot Plant in Billingham, a research centre in Moosburg, Germany, and a partially constructed site in Konin, Poland, for £50 million (€59 million). The sale also includes Johnson Matthey’s eLNO technology based on the GEMX and CAM-7 cathode platforms.
Johnson Matthey will receive a minority stake in EV Metals as part of the deal. However, the size of the stake is not known. The transaction is expected to close in the summer of 2022.
“Johnson Matthey made the decision to exit Battery Materials due to insufficient returns, increased commoditisation of battery materials combined with the need for very high capital investments to remain competitive,” says CEO Liam Condon. “With EV Metals Group vision and capability to be a fully integrated battery chemicals business, I am very confident that they are the right owner for the Battery Materials business going forward.”
Michael Naylor, managing director and chief executive officer of EV Metals Group, praised the “world-class, leading-edge cathode active materials manufacturing technology” it was acquiring from Johnson Matthey.
Johnson Matthey’s Canadian business, meanwhile, is being sold to Nano One Materials for about 10.25 million Canadian dollars (€7.5 million). This includes an LFP production facility near Montreal. This has a production capacity of 2,400 tonnes per year. This transaction is expected to be completed by the end of 2022, according to Johnson Matthey. “The rapidly expanding need for responsibly produced cathode materials in North America presents an opportunity for Nano One to deploy its technology and become a leader,” says Dan Blondal, CEO of Nano One.
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