SVOLT plans another battery plant outside China

SVOLT is looking into building another plant for battery cells with an annual capacity of 50 GWh. According to the company, Finland is one of several locations both inside and outside the European Economic Area (EEA) that are being considered for this.

The emailed announcement mentions “one more” production facility. In April 2023, Bloomberg had reported that SVOLT was planning a total of five cell factories in Europe. Most recently, there were rumours of a major order from BMW, according to which SVOLT would supply battery cells with a total volume of almost 90 GWh to the carmaker in Europe from the end of 2027.

That Finland is the only named candidate for the plant is justified by SVOLT with “significant raw material deposits, a green energy infrastructure and a sustainable supply chain for the battery industry”. Finland is only “shortlisted”, but there is also talk of a potential location – so SVOLT seems to already have a site or region in mind, but does not want to comment in detail yet. Even a time frame for the decision-making process or a possible start of production is not mentioned yet.

In return, the company makes it clear that every investment in the European Economic Area requires “financial support in the form of public funds”. Only in this way can the investment be economically viable “under the given circumstances and the competitive situation compared to countries outside the EEA”. So it will depend not only on the attractiveness of the location, but also on the negotiations with the Finnish government.

“With an additional battery cell factory, we want to make an important contribution to zero-emission mobility and advance the energy transition,” said Kai-Uwe Wollenhaupt, President SVOLT Europe & Senior Vice President SVOLT Energy Technology. “A project of this magnitude relies on the close cooperation of all decision-makers: SVOLT, local authorities and the national government. Decisions on new sites are always driven by several factors: In addition to competitive and reliable infrastructure, subsidies can also be important and necessary components of the final site selection process.”

The company has already announced two factories for Europe, both located in Germany. The conversion of an existing factory into a 12-gigawatt plant in Lauchhammer, Brandenburg, is currently underway. The start of construction of an announced 2-billion-euro factory in Saarland has been postponed to at least 2027 due to local protests. Since SVOLT will supply the Stellantis Group from 2025 (this could be the LFP cells for the recently presented Citroën ë-C3 and its announced sister models), this order should be served from Lauchhammer.

One thing is clear: SVOLT wants to expand. “SVOLT’s expansion strategy anticipates the rapid development of electric mobility worldwide. This includes moving out of the domestic market and into the world,” says Hongxin Yang, Chairman and CEO of SVOLT Energy Technology. “SVOLT recognises the need for this approach in terms of customer orientation and strives to better meet customer needs in this way. We want to build more capacity as quickly as possible to supply our customers outside China. However, the decision for a new location is always guided by several factors: Planning security and economic feasibility are the most important.”

Source: Info via email


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