Eve Energy brings cylindrical cell production to Malaysia
Chinese battery cell manufacturer Eve Energy has broken ground in Malaysia to build a plant in Kedah, a state in the country’s northwest. The new factory will focus on producing cylindrical cells for electric two-wheelers and power tools for supply across Southeast Asia.
Eve Energy has yet to disclose the capacity and start of production, but the company’s Malaysia director Joe Chen stressed this was an important milestone in Eve’s global expansion. He added that “most importantly,” the factory would let Eve “contribute to developing the electrical power ecosystem in Malaysia”. The statement was echoed by the Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA). Its deputy CEO Lim Bee Vian, said the collaboration could “foster an environment of innovation and technological advancement”. It is unclear if Eve will receive government funding.
The latter is, however, the case in Europe, where Eve Energy is reportedly planning its first factory in Hungary. The government supports the construction with 14 billion forints (€38 mn), while Eve will invest one billion euros. The significant investment builds on a contract with BMW. The Debrecen facility will supply large cylindrical cells for the carmaker’s New Class electric cars and sits in the Northwest Economic Belt reserved for BMW suppliers. BMW started building its EV plant in Debrecen in mid-2022 and appointed three cell suppliers in CATL, Eve and Envision AESC. Together they will cover North America, Europe and China through six factories.
Given the near global scope, Eve also negotiated with the recycling specialist Li-Cycle. The agreement covers the North American market and the reutilising scrap from cell production at Eve’s facilities in Malaysia and Hungary.
In Thailand, Eve Energy is also planning a joint venture with the local utility Energy Absolute to build a factory with an annual capacity of at least 6 GWh. Thailand is becoming an EV hub with several EV manufacturers recently starting planning, building and operating plants in the country, including Great Wall, Changan, Neta, Foxconn, BYD and Aiways with both EV and battery production. Immediate supply chains are also appearing, with battery makers Svolt and Gotion High Tech setting up operations in the South East Asian country, alongside German testing and certification service provider TÜV SÜD and battery recycling operations from ACE Green Recycling.
Malaysia is seeing a similar development as a production hub in the SEA region. Volvo, Samsung SDI and SK Nexilis are among the companies with manufacturing facilities there.