Evonik acquires stake in graphene specialist SuperC


German chemical company Evonik has invested an undisclosed sum in Chinese battery specialist SuperC. The latter developed an innovative process to produce few-layer graphene and, in turn, pastes for electrodes in lithium-ion batteries.

According to Evonik, SuperC’s graphene-based electrode material is already used in products from major Chinese battery manufacturers. The company wants to open a new production facility in Hefei in 2023. The Gotion High-Tech and CALB battery plants are located or are under construction in Hefei. Automakers such as VW and JAC have vehicle plants there.

The addition of graphene increases the electrical and thermal conductivity of the batteries, which should improve their overall performance and position speed, says Evonik. The batteries are also more insensitive to temperature. That reduces the need for cooling and makes the overall system more efficient. It also reduces the risk of fire, Evonik says.

The announcement does not specify precisely how much Evonik is investing in SuperC and what shares the German chemical company will receive in return. What is clear is that the money for this will come from the Sustainability Tech Fund launched in 2022, which totals 150 million euros. Evonik and its subsidiary Evonik Ventures intend to use this money to invest in innovative technologies and business models. In the case of SuperC, the aim is to improve factors such as range, robustness, charging speed, and the service life of lithium-ion batteries, thereby accelerating the turnaround to climate-friendly mobility, according to the statement.

“By investing in SuperC, we are supporting a cutting-edge technology with a promising future. High-performance batteries are a crucial factor in accelerating the electrification of road transport and permanently reducing CO2 emissions,” says Bernhard Mohr, head of Evonik’s venture capital unit. Stefan Plass, head of the Interface & Performance Business Line, adds: “By working with SuperC, we are expanding our technical know-how and our understanding of the highly dynamic market. This fits perfectly with our growth strategy for battery solutions.”


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