Sunwoda sources battery separator films from SK subsidiary
The South Korean company SK IE Technology (SKIET) has reached an agreement with the Chinese battery manufacturer Sunwoda to supply separators for electric car batteries. Initially, the agreement will cover China, but later the supply will also be extended to Europe.
According to the letter of intent that has now been signed, SKIET will initially supply Sunwoda with separators from its plant in Changzhou, China. The plan here is to establish a medium to long-term strategic cooperation in the Chinese electric vehicle market, focusing on batteries. SKIET has previously supplied separators for IT and electronics products to Sunwoda Group, but the current deal is the first “large-scale supply of EV battery separators to a Chinese EV battery manufacturer”, SKIET said.
Later, the collaboration will be extended to Europe. SKIET opened its first separator plant in Poland in 2021. SKIET is also considering entering the North American market to benefit from subsidies there. However, SK Group does not yet provide more detailed information on these considerations in the statement.
Sunwoda supplies its batteries to Geely, Dongfeng, SAIC, Volvo Cars and Volkswagen, among others – but these are usually models that are not sold in Europe. In Germany, Sunwoda is known as a cell supplier for the batteries of the Dacia Spring. According to the press release, Sunwoda is “actively preparing to enter the European market, including the construction of a battery factory in Hungary”. The separator foils from the Polish SKIET plant should then also be processed there. The company currently has an annual battery production capacity of 40 GWh and plans to increase this to 138 GWh by 2025.