Northvolt to build battery factory in Quebec
The Swedish battery cell manufacturer Northvolt has now officially announced the location of its planned factory in Canada. As suspected, it will be built near Montreal in the Canadian province of Quebec, specifically on a 170-hectare site in McMasterville and Saint-Basile-le-Grand. The choice of the site around 25 kilometres east of Montreal is also justified by the availability of clean energy from hydropower.
In addition to the exact location, there are also further details about the factory itself: Called Northvolt Six, the battery cell factory will be designed for an annual capacity of 60 gigawatt hours and will have adjacent facilities for the production of active cathode material and for recycling batteries. Production is scheduled to start in 2026.
Construction of the first phase, with a capacity of 30 GWh per year, will begin before the end of 2023, Northvolt said. This first phase of cathode and cell production, combined with recycling, is expected to require a total investment of seven billion Canadian dollars or 4.9 billion euros and employ up to 3,000 people. In July, agency reports still mentioned an investment of seven billion US dollars, in fact it is seven billion CAD – about five billion US dollars.
Northvolt receives “strong support from the government of Canada and the government of Québec”, but this is not specified. By way of comparison, the huge VW battery factory in St. Thomas in Ontario is probably being funded to the tune of around 14 billion Canadian dollars – but it is also designed to produce 90 GWh. Northvolt is the largest private investment in Quebec history.
“Since Northvolt was founded seven years ago, we have had one goal: to establish a new, sustainable model for battery manufacturing. Today, we are expanding Northvolt’s ambitions into Canada,” says Northvolt’s co-founder and CEO Peter Carlsson in his company’s announcement, released in English and French in parallel.
The North American division, Northvolt North America, based in Montreal, will be led by Paolo Cerruti as CEO, who also co-founded Northvolt. “With its unique access to renewable energy and raw materials, we see this as an ideal location for Northvolt’s first Gigafactory outside Europe. We look forward to working with all local stakeholders and the province to make Northvolt Six a prime example of sustainable investment,” says Cerruti.
northvolt.com (in French)