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Northvolt completes equity capital raise to enable Europe’s first homegrown gigafactories for lithium-ion batteries

  • Volkswagen Group and Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division lead a $1 billion equity capital raise in Northvolt alongside BMW Group, AMF, Folksam Group and IMAS Foundation.
  • With the European Investment Bank and additional lenders set to provide debt financing as a part of the total funding, the establishment of the initial 16 GWh of lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing capacity at the gigafactory, Northvolt Ett, in Sweden is enabled. Building construction will commence in August.
  • After entering a number of supply agreements, a significant share of the production volumes from Northvolt Ett has been sold to key customers, amounting to a combined order value of over $13 billion through 2030.
     
  • A joint venture between the Volkswagen Group and Northvolt will be set up to establish a 16 GWh battery cell gigafactory in Germany. Volkswagen is investing around $1 billion (€900 million) in joint battery activities with Northvolt. A part of the amount is intended for the joint venture, another part of the total amount will be invested directly in Northvolt.

Stockholm, Sweden – Northvolt today announced the agreement of a $1 billion equity capital raise to enable the establishment of Europe’s first homegrown gigafactory for lithium-ion battery cells, Northvolt Ett, in Skellefteå, Sweden. In cooperation with the Volkswagen Group, the company also announced plans to establish a second gigafactory with an intended location in Lower Saxony, Germany. 

 

“Today is not only a great milestone for Northvolt, it also marks a key moment for Europe that clearly shows that we are ready to compete in the coming wave of electrification, and that we will do so using battery cells which carry the lowest CO2 footprint possible,” said Peter Carlsson, co-founder and CEO of Northvolt.

 

Volkswagen Group together with funds managed by the Merchant Banking Division of the Goldman Sachs Group, Inc will lead the equity fund raising alongside equity being provided by the BMW Group, AMF, Folksam Group and IMAS Foundation. The transaction is subject to approval from the Swedish Competition Authority.  

 

As previously announced, the European Investment Bank has approved in-principle a $400 (€350) million loan as a part of the total funding for Northvolt Ett. Together with additional debt being raised, the establishment of the initial 16 GWh of lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing capacity at Northvolt Ett is enabled. Building construction work will commence in August with large-scale production estimated to begin in 2021. 

 

Northvolt Ett will serve as Northvolt’s primary production site, hosting active material preparation, cell assembly, recycling and auxiliaries. The gigafactory will be expanded to at least 32 GWh. 

 

“With these world-class financial and industrial partners coming together and getting behind our mission, we see a tremendous opportunity and momentum for further capacity expansion and product innovation over the coming years. This is only the beginning,” said Peter Carlsson. 

In addition to the gigafactory in Sweden, Volkswagen and Northvolt plan to set up a 50/50 joint venture to establish a 16 GWh battery cell factory with an intended location in Salzgitter, Lower Saxony, Germany. Volkswagen is investing around $1 billion (€900 million) in joint battery activities with Northvolt. A part of the amount is intended for the joint venture, another part of the total amount will be invested directly in Northvolt. The production facility is scheduled to start manufacturing battery cells for Volkswagen from late 2023 or early 2024 and could be increased to 24 GWh over the following years. 

 

Dr. Stefan Sommer, Member of the Volkswagen AG Board of Management responsible for Procurement, commented:   

 

“Volkswagen is laying the groundwork at all levels for the successful implementation of its electrification strategy. With Northvolt, we have found a European partner whose know-how and sustainable, CO2 optimized battery cell production processes will enable us to advance cell production here in Germany. The prerequisite for this is, of course, the creation of the political framework.” 

 

Over recent few years, Europe has witnessed remarkable growth in demand for domestic cell capacity driven by the industrial transition towards electrification. After entering a number of supply agreements, a significant share of the production volumes from Northvolt Ett has been sold to key customers, amounting to a combined order value of over $13 billion through 2030.  

 

Michael Bruun, Managing Director at Goldman Sachs, commented: 

 

“The transition to a clean energy future in Europe relies on sustainable and cost-effective battery cell production. Northvolt has developed industry-leading technology and processes which position it to play a crucial role in European supply in the coming years. We are pleased to be partnering with industrial and financial investors and backing a world class management team executing on an ambitious growth strategy. 

 

BMW Group is a strong supporter of locating additional battery manufacturers in Europe, with a focus on creating a sustainable value chain. Therefore, it has backed Northvolt’s potential and expertise from an early stage.  

 

Klaus Fröhlich, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, Development, commented:  

 

“Over the past 15 years, we have built up our expertise across the entire value chain with regard to electro-mobility. With our flexible architecture and already the fifth generation of our electric drive trains, we will be able to scale up to high production volumes and better cater to changing customer demand. This is why we are using our know-how to support the development of the battery value creation chain in Europe along with several partners. Northvolt shares our approach to sustainability – from regenerative power generation to consistent recycling management. We look forward to jointly developing the next generation of battery technology with them.” 

 

Since its official launch in March 2017, Northvolt has grown from 12 to almost 300 people, and now employs over 45 different nationalities from companies such as Tesla, Daimler, LG Chem, Panasonic, Spotify and Google. In 2018, Northvolt delivered its first product – a battery pack – to Epiroc’s fleet of underground mining machines, as well as produced its first battery cell. Currently, the company has an operational research lab and two cell factories under construction in Sweden – Northvolt Ett in Skellefteå and Northvolt Labs in Västerås – as well as one battery systems factory in Gdańsk, Poland, already in production.

 

About Northvolt 

Northvolt is a European supplier of sustainable, high-quality battery cells and systems. Founded in 2016 to enable the European transition to a decarbonized future, the company has made swift progress on its mission to deliver the world’s greenest lithium-ion battery with a minimal CO2 footprint and the highest ambitions for recycling. Among Northvolt industrial partners and customers are ABB, BMW Group, Scania, Siemens, Vattenfall, Vestas and the Volkswagen Group. For more information visit northvolt.com. 

 

Morgan Stanley & Co. International plc acts as financial advisor to Northvolt.

European backing for Northvolt’s battery gigafactory in Sweden

  • In-principle approval of the European Investment Bank to support Northvolts gigafactory for lithium-ion battery cells in Skellefteå, Sweden
  • Pending finalization of due diligence and negotiations, the EIB’s financing commitment is foreseen to be EUR 350 million

 

The European Investment Bank has given its in-principle agreement to support the financing of Europe’s first home-grown gigafactory for lithium-ion battery cells, Northvolt Ett, in Sweden. Upon conclusion of a loan agreement, the financing would be supported by the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), the main pillar of the Investment Plan for Europe.

 

The gigafactory will be established in Skellefteå in northern Sweden – a region home to a prominent raw material and mining cluster which has a long history of process manufacturing and recycling. Noting the region’s clean power base, building the factory in northern Sweden will enable Northvolt to utilize 100% renewable energy within its production processes.

 

EIB Vice-President Andrew McDowell noted: “The development of a competitive and green battery value chain within Europe can not only cut greenhouse gas emissions by decarbonizing power generation and transport, but can also help protect millions of well paid jobs in European industries in the face of increasing global competition. The EUR 350 million loan to Northvolt approved in-principle today by our Board of Directors is the largest ever direct EIB financing approval for battery technology, and we look forward to working with Northvolt over the coming months to finalize contracts.”

 

Maroš Šefčovič, European Commission Vice-President for the Energy Union, said: “The EIB and the Commission are strategic partners under the EU Battery Alliance. I welcome the significant support proposed by the EIB to Northvolt gigafactory as a stepping-stone towards building a competitive, sustainable and innovative value chain, with battery cells manufactured at scale, here, in Europe. Our two institutions are working closely with the industry and key Member States to put the EU on a firm path towards global leadership in this rapidly expanding sector.”

 

Northvolt Ett will serve as Northvolt’s primary production site, hosting active material preparation, cell assembly, recycling and auxiliaries. The construction of the first quarter of the factory will be completed in 2020. Ramping up to full capacity, Northvolt Ett will produce 32 GWh of battery capacity per year.

 

“This EIB in principle approval is a key moment in the process of finalizing our capital raise to support the establishment of Northvolt Ett. Today, we are one step closer to our goal of building the greenest batteries in the world and enabling the European transition to a decarbonized future,” said Peter Carlsson, co-founder and CEO of Northvolt.

 

The capital raise, in which this EIB loan would be included, will finance the establishment of the first 16 GWh of battery capacity production. The batteries from Northvolt Ett are targeted for use in automotive, grid storage, and industrial and portable applications.

 

“Today’s decision by the EIB is very gratifying and a big step towards a large-scale battery production in the EU and a fossil free welfare society. The decision shows that there are prerequisites in Sweden for sustainable battery production, it is important for Sweden and the rest of the EU to produce battery materials and battery cells, based on green, Swedish electricity,” said Ibrahim Baylan, Swedish Minister for Business, Industry and Innovation.

 

Background Information

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union, owned by its Member States. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU policy goals. In 2018 alone, the Bank made available a record EUR 1.37 billion in loans for Swedish projects in various sectors, including research & development, industry, nearly-zero-energy-buildings and telecommunications.

 

The EIB is the European Union’s bank; the only bank owned by and representing the interests of the European Union Member States. It works closely with other EU institutions to implement EU policy and is the world’s largest multilateral borrower and lender. The EIB provides finance and expertise for sustainable investment projects that contribute to EU policy objectives. More than 90% of its activity is in Europe.

 

Northvolt was founded in 2016 with the mission to build the world’s greenest battery cell, with a minimal carbon footprint and the highest ambitions for recycling, to enable the European transition to renewable energy. Northvolt’s team of experts is building the next generation battery cell factory focused on process innovation, scale and vertical integration. Once completed, it will be one of Europe’s largest battery cell factories and produce 32 GWh worth of capacity annually.

 

The Investment Plan for Europe, known as the Juncker Plan, is one of the European Commission’s top priorities. It focuses on boosting investment to generate jobs and growth by making smarter use of new and existing financial resources, removing obstacles to investment, and providing visibility and technical assistance to investment projects.

 

The European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI) is the main pillar of the Juncker Plan and provides first loss guarantees, enabling the EIB to invest in more projects that often come with greater risks. EFSI has already yielded tangible results. The projects and agreements approved for financing under EFSI are expected to mobilise almost EUR 393 billion in investments and support 945.000 SMEs in the 28 Member States. More information on the results of the Investment Plan for Europe is available here.

Northvolt secures environmental permit for extended operations

Northvolt has today received a second environmental permit from the Land and Environment Court in Umeå in response to its application for an extension to operational capacity from 8 GWh to 16 GWh at the battery manufacturing facility, Northvolt Ett, to be constructed in the municipality of Skellefteå in the north of Sweden.

The permit grants Northvolt authority to operate Northvolt Ett up to a production capacity of approximately 16 GWh/year, or half the final capacity of the facility.

 

The scope of the permit encompasses operations, onsite materials and chemicals, emissions, facility effluent and safety measures.

 

The permit represents an extension to that provided June 7th 2018, which provided authority to operate at a production capacity of 8 GWh/year. Having commenced last June, ground preparation at Northvolt Ett is slated to conclude later this year.

Volkswagen forms European Battery Union with Northvolt

  • European companies and institutes join forces under the leadership of the Volkswagen Group and Northvolt to form the European Battery Union (EBU) consortium
  • Consortium wishes to participate for funding for the research, development and industrial implementation of battery technology

 

Wolfsburg (Germany), Berlin, March 21, 2019. The Volkswagen Group and further European partners are joining forces to form the European Battery Union (EBU) with a view to forging ahead with battery research throughout Europe. The new consortium is to be led by the Volkswagen Group and the Swedish battery producer Northvolt. The joint research activities of the European Battery Union will cover the entire battery value stream – from raw materials through cell technology to recycling. The prime objective is to accumulate much broader know-how on battery cell production.

 

Partners from research and industry in seven EU member states are joining forces in the European Battery Union consortium. The comprehensive research collaboration will range from raw material production, to cell technology and cell production processes and through to recycling. The research activities will also focus on the development and engineering of plant technologies allowing sustainable, climate friendly and competitive battery cell production in the European Union.

 

All the partners will step up their investments as a result of the planned additional research activities. These investments could receive financial support from funding announced by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.

 

All the results of research work by the European Battery Union will be exchanged between all the partners across national borders. The joint research activities are to start at the beginning of 2020.

European battery stakeholders unite!

Yesterday, the fifth meeting of the European Battery Alliance (EBA) took place in Brussels. As a partner to the initiative, Northvolt was pleased to be in attendance.

The meeting gathered together some 200 stakeholders from across the European battery industry, and it was an encouraging day for the European value chain for lithium-ion batteries.

In his opening remarks, keynote speaker Maroš Šefčovic (Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of the energy union), who launched the EBA in October 2017, pointed out how far Europe has come since the launch of the alliance, with a number of new projects already underway along the battery value chain.

“We have to do it together and we have to act now if we want to have battery production in Europe,” said Diego Pavia, CEO of InnoEnergy, in opening the EBA meeting’s high-level workshop.

 

The value of collaboration

The EBA has partnership at its heart, and at Northvolt we could not agree more that this is the right direction to take. We know first-hand from our industrial partnerships with the likes of ABB, Scania, Vestas, BMW and others, that dialogue and collaboration drive us forward toward solutions.

The EBA shares this ethos. It is a cooperative platform gathering together the European Commission, the European Investment Bank, industrial stakeholders, interested EU states, and a wide number of forward-thinking, innovative actors.

Providing a stage upon which to engage with one another, the EBA represents one of Europe’s strongest assets in our common pursuit of realizing a competitive manufacturing value chain in Europe, with sustainable battery cells at its core.

With the challenges of transitioning to a clean energy future ahead of us, now more than ever we need solidarity and partnership.

This is especially the case in the context of battery energy storage. For Europe to establish a footing with a domestic battery supply chain, we’re up against serious competition from the incumbent battery manufacturers of the world.

As Maroš Šefčovic has previously stated: “No single actor, no single country can manage this challenge on its own.”

There is much at stake. A European battery supply chain would bring tens of thousands of new jobs, security of supply for a product pitched to fulfil a pivotal role in future energy systems, and a market valued at up to €250 billion a year from 2025 onward according to the EBA.

 

Establishing sustainability and circular economies in a new European battery supply chain

A key focus of the EBA relates to something very close to Northvolt’s heart: sustainability and recycling. The EBA has a clear intent to enhance the reuse and recycling of battery materials. It’s an approach that is built right into the core of the Northvolt model.

Northvolt’s collaboration with the Industrial Materials Recycling group at Chalmers University, for instance, is centered around developing technology to develop and implement a sustainable solution for a large-scale battery recycling with low environmental impact utilizing hydrometallurgical techniques.

“With some 11 million tonnes of batteries expected to be discarded by 2030, this is an opportunity we cannot afford to miss,” comments Emma Nehrenheim, Northvolt’s Chief Environment Officer.

“It is therefore key that the EU and the industrial companies involved throughout the value chain work together to create a framework that encourages recycling and recovery efforts in the coming years as European battery production ramps up production.”

To be sure, the EBA will play a very important role in this process, and at Northvolt we look forward to the work ahead of us.

~

Read more about sustainability at Northvolt in ‘Closing the loop: Recycling lithium-ion batteries on an industrial level, the final step towards sustainable electrification‘.

Susanna Campbell and Tom Johnstone join Northvolt’s Board of Directors

Northvolt today appointed two new members to its Board of Directors.  

“Sanna and Tom have unique backgrounds and competences that will add significant value to Northvolt’s strategy and to our mission of enabling Europe’s transition to renewable energy,” said Peter Carlsson, CEO and Co-Founder of Northvolt.

Tom Johnstone is the Chairman of Husqvarna, Deputy Chair At Wärtsilä, Board Member of Volvo Cars and Investor and has served as President and CEO of SKF Group. Susanna Campbell is an independent investor and board member of several boards including Norrsken Founders Fund, Telia Company and Indutrade. They have both previously been a part of Northvolt’s Advisory Board. 

“Northvolt has made tremendous progress in the last 18 months and have built an extremely talented multicultural team. The new laboratory and production center in Västerås which is nearing completion is the next important step in the journey. The next 2-3 years are about turning the dream of being Europe’s most environmentally friendly battery producer into reality,” commented Tom Johnstone.   

“Northvolt is a truly unique enterprise, combining environmental benefit through enabling electrification on a massive scale and at the same time being the pioneer in building a new industry for Europe, in the process creating significant job creation for Sweden. Having spent a lot of time at Northvolt in the last 18 months, I have been extremely impressed with the team, consisting of hand-picked individuals, with impressive drive and knowledge from around the world. Funding and starting to build the first factory, Northvolt Labs, in Västerås was an important milestone in itself but is only the beginning of what I believe will be even bigger achievements over the coming years,” said Susanna Campbell.  

 

Northvolt to establish state-of-the-art production facility for battery systems

In order to meet the increased demand for complete battery solutions on the European market, Northvolt today announced it is establishing a new facility to industrialize and produce battery modules.

The facility is to be established in Gdansk, Poland, and it will consist of a state-of-the-art production facility, including a R&D center, for battery modules and energy storage solutions. The facility will be operated as a partnership between Northvolt and South Bay Solutions, a company specialized in manufacturing battery modules.

“We have seen a rapid increase in interest for complete battery solutions from several of our key customer segments during the past year. With this facility we will be able to meet that demand,” said Peter Carlsson, CEO and Co-Founder, Northvolt.

The battery systems that will be produced are the full enclosure that delivers power to a final product, such as an energy storage solution or a mining machine. They contain battery cells, an electronic control system and often a cooling and heating system.

The manufacturing of battery systems compared to battery cells are two different industrial processes. Cell production is a highly energy intensive chemical process. Northolt’s cell production is being established in Skellefteå, Sweden, and is planned to start production towards the end of 2020.

The production of battery systems is a mechanical and electromechanical assembly process. With the new facility, Northvolt will be able to tap into an emerging cluster for the electromechanical industry in the region. Proximity to a strong supply chain eco system, labor markets and end-customers in continental Europe are also important factors behind the establishment.

Using the latest technology in analytics supported manufacturing techniques, production in Gdansk will begin in 2019 with an initial manufacturing capacity of 10 000 modules per year. The capacity will be expanded gradually over the following years as Northvolt ramps up its production of battery cells.

Quick Facts:

Start of production: 2019

Initial capacity: 10 000 modules per year

Initial number of employees: 100

 

BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore join forces to develop sustainable life cycle loop for batteries

Munich/Stockholm/Brussels

The BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore have formed a joint technology consortium in order to work closely together on the continued development of a complete and sustainable value chain for battery cells for electrified vehicles in Europe. The project is seeking to press ahead with the sustainable industrialisation of battery cells in Europe and the associated acquisition of skills, from cell chemistry and development through to production and ultimately recycling.

The development activities of the pan-European consortium will help to create high-tech jobs, thereby fully supports the EU Battery Alliance, founded by European Commissioner Maroš Šefčovič, stating: “Batteries are instrumental in our transition to clean mobility and clean energy systems. Thanks to genuine involvement of actors from all segments of the battery value chain, Europe is becoming the lead player in this strategic area. I therefore welcome that key actors of our automotive sectors are investing in the future of European battery innovation and manufacturing.”

The chief objective is to make battery cells sustainable by establishing a closed life cycle loop. This starts with a recyclable cell design and continues with a manufacturing process that mostly uses renewable energy. The next step is a long period of primary use as a drive battery, possibly followed by another phase of secondary use as a stationary energy storage device. At the end of its life cycle, the cell is recycled and the raw materials reused, thereby completing the loop.

In view of the growing numbers of electrified vehicles, establishing a broad basis for procuring battery cells is becoming a matter of greater strategic significance for manufacturers. With Northvolt as a partner focused on sustainable production and the BMW Group in its capacity as a carmaker that is already developing its own battery cells today, this can be achieved to great effect. Because battery cells contain essential resources and materials, feeding these back into the loop becomes more and more important as electric vehicles multiply in number. As Umicore is a global leader in the development and production of active materials for battery cells and resource recycling and the BMW Group boasts tremendous expertise in material and cell design, there are high hopes for some major achievements in this area too. Sustainability and efficiency are both crucial factors for Umicore.

Development

In order to accelerate the development of battery cells and make further progress in terms of cell chemistry and cell design, the BMW Group’s new battery cell centre of excellence will be inaugurated in summer 2019. Besides battery cell development, other key skills will be pooled there too, from the production of battery cell prototypes to build-to-print expertise. This is important for the BMW Group as a way of endowing potential suppliers for cell production with the necessary skills to meet its own requirements. The BMW Group is already investing heavily in the entire value chain today and, by so doing, is blazing a trail when it comes to sustainability. Consequently, ensuring that raw materials come from environmentally and socially responsible sources, obliging cell suppliers to reduce their carbon footprint, using recycled materials, and creating battery concepts that can be serviced and easily recycled are already high priorities for the BMW Group, which intends to continue strengthening its capabilities and expanding its activities in this area.

Production

“The sustainability approach of Northvolt makes it a highly appealing company for us, that was furthermore very receptive to our ideas,” remarked Klaus Fröhlich, Member of the Board of Management of BMW AG, responsible for Development. For this reason, the BMW Group and Northvolt have been collaborating for some time now as part of a strategic technology project. The collaboration will leverage the capabilities of Northvolt Labs, a scale-up line and research facility which will be used to test and industrialize battery cells before large-scale production, with the aim of developing cutting-edge green battery cells. The collaboration has been supported by BMW Group through an investment to enable the initial phase of the partnership. Sustainability is at the core of Northvolt’s business and its ambition is to become one of the first fully circular industrial companies. This is why all the electrical power for its future production of battery cells originates from renewable resources. Another important consideration for Northvolt is local and responsible sourcing of the raw materials needed. Sustainability has also been one of the BMW Group’s central strategic targets for many years, meaning that the two companies operate based on a similar ethic.

”BMW and Northvolt have a shared commitment to reduce CO2 emissions from transportation. As batteries are becoming a key strategic question for car manufacturers, this partnership does not only mark a key milestone for Northvolt, it also highlights the importance of sustainable battery cells in the coming wave of electrification”, said Peter Carlsson, Co-Founder and CEO, Northvolt.

Materials development and recycling

Umicore is the partner responsible for active anode and cathode materials development and recycling in the technology alliance. This collaboration will enable innovative and highly efficient production technologies to be applied to the production of active materials based on recycled metals. In addition, this project covers smart battery pack disassembly, screening for reutilisation of the battery cells and feeding the recycled resources back into active material production. As electric mobility continues to expand, growing needs will not be limited to sustainable extraction of raw materials – recovering materials that have already been used will also become increasingly important in easing the burden on raw material production.

”It is rewarding to see that Umicore’s product technologies and recycling services are key enablers for this technology alliance with BMW and Northvolt. By jointly demonstrating a closed loop for high performance, green and EU-based batteries, we are underlining the future potential and importance of a European supply chain for the success of car electrification in the region”, said Marc Grynberg, CEO of Umicore.

The collaboration

When it comes to key technologies of the future, the BMW Group often works together with established specialists and suppliers, young companies and start-ups. This enables faster access to specific solutions. With this particular technology project, the BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore are laying the basis for a sustainable value chain for automotive battery cells in Europe, from development and production right through to recycling.

In Europe, the BMW Group has already been manufacturing modules with supplied battery cells before using these modules to build complete batteries for plug-in hybrids and battery-powered electric vehicles. With its battery cell production, Northvolt provides the final element needed for purely European production of complete batteries for electric mobility applications in future, resulting in a substantial reduction in carbon emissions at the same time.

The BMW Group is already demonstrating now how batteries can be used as energy storage devices in both domestic and industrial applications once the battery cells reach the end of their vehicle life cycle.

Umicore has recently announced it will soon start building a cathode material manufacturing facility in Europe and already runs a recycling plant for lithium-ion batteries in Europe. Umicore is advancing the technology for recycling battery cells and returning the recycled resources to the material production cycle, thereby making a vital contribution to the future of sustainable mobility.

 

About Northvolt
Northvolt was founded in 2016 with the mission to build the world’s greenest battery cell, with a minimal carbon footprint and the highest ambitions for recycling, to enable the European transition to renewable energy. Northvolt’s team of experts is building the next generation battery cell factory focused on process innovation, scale and vertical integration. Once completed, it will be Europe’s largest battery cell factory and produce 32 GWh worth of capacity annually. For more information visit northvolt.com
About Umicore
As Umicore is a global leader in the development and production of active materials for battery cells and resource recycling and the BMW Group boasts tremendous expertise in material and cell design, there are high hopes for some major achievements in this area too. Sustainability and efficiency are both crucial factors for Umicore.
Umicore is a global materials technology and recycling group. It focuses on application areas where its expertise in materials science, chemistry and metallurgy makes a real difference. Its activities are organised in three business groups: Catalysis, Energy & Surface Technologies and Recycling. Each business group is divided into market-focused business units offering materials and solutions that are at the cutting edge of new technological developments and essential to everyday life.
Umicore strategy focuses on clean mobility materials and recycling with the overriding goal of sustainable value creation based on an ambition to develop, produce and recycle materials in a way that fulfils its mission: materials for a better life.
Umicore’s industrial and commercial operations as well as research & development activities are located across the world to best serve its global customer base. The Group generated a turnover of € 6.4 billion (€ 1.7 billion excluding metal) in the first half of 2018 and currently employs 9,800 people.
The BMW Group
With its four brands BMW, MINI, Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorrad, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. The BMW Group production network comprises 30 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries; the company has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.
In 2017, the BMW Group sold over 2,463,500 passenger vehicles and more than 164,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax in the financial year 2017 was € 10.655 billion on revenues amounting to € 98.678 billion. As of 31 December 2017, the BMW Group had a workforce of 129,932 employees.
The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.

 

Northvolt secures environmental permit for Europe’s largest battery factory

Northvolt today received the environmental permit for the establishment of Europe’s largest lithium-ion battery cell factory. Ground preparations on the factory site, which marks the initial step of the construction phase, will now begin on June 8.

The factory will be built in the municipality of Skellefteå in the north of Sweden. The environmental permit, which covers both construction and operation, was granted by the Land and Environment Court in Umeå less than six months after the final application was submitted. The permit was issued for the first section of the factory that will be completed in 2020 and produce eight GWh cell capacity annually. The full factory will be ready in 2023 and produce at least 32 GWh annually when it reaches full-scale capacity.

– Today marks another major milestone for Northvolt and the battery value chain that is starting to take shape in Europe. We will start construction in Skellefteå tomorrow, which means that we are well-positioned to keep our timeline, said Peter Carlsson, CEO and Co-Founder, Northvolt.

The first phase of the construction, which primarily consists of ground preparations, is estimated to be completed during the second half of 2019 and is financed within the current funding. Northvolt has initiated a process to support the funding required for investments in buildings, materials and equipment that will take place in the next phase until the first part of the factory is completed in late 2020.

The lithium-ion battery cell factory in Skellefteå will produce the world’s greenest battery, with a minimal carbon footprint and the highest ambitions for recycling, to enable and accelerate the European transition to renewable energy.

As a first step towards the establishment, Northvolt in April broke ground on the construction of Northvolt Labs located in Västerås outside of Stockholm. Northvolt Labs is a cutting edge scale-up line and research facility used to develop, test and industrialize lithium-ion battery cells before large-scale production. It will start production in 2019.

Since launch in March 2017, Northvolt has entered into industrial partnerships with ABB, Nemaska Lithium, Scania, SECI, Siemens, Skellefteå Kraft and Vestas, as well as been selected by Epiroc as a supplier of battery systems for zero-emissions mining machines. Northvolt has also received support from the European Investment Bank and the Swedish Energy Agency.

Siemens and Northvolt partner in next generation lithium-ion battery cell production

  • Siemens to offer Northvolt its Digital Enterprise portfolio that enables the digitization of the entire value chain – from the design of the battery cell to production and services
  • Siemens will support the technology partnership through an investment of EUR 10 million
  • After production start, Northvolt will become a preferred supplier for lithium-ion batteries for Siemens

Siemens and Northvolt today announced a partnership for the development of best-in-class technology to produce high-quality, green lithium-ion batteries. The partnership, which will be supported by Siemens through an investment of EUR 10 million, also includes the supply of lithium-ion batteries.

To mitigate the effects of climate change, Europe is accelerating its transition to renewable energies. Electrification and an increased use of batteries is one of the cornerstones of this transition, enabling the large-scale conversion to sustainable transportation as well as a deep integration of renewable sources in the energy mix. With limited current and planned capacity in place, Europe is now facing a major battery deficit of within the next few years.

“We are happy to support Northvolt in building the battery factory of the future. With our Digital Enterprise portfolio, we contribute to a competitive battery cell production in Europe that fully exploits the benefits of software and automation: greater flexibility, efficiency and quality with shorter time to market”, said Jan Mrosik, CEO of Siemens Digital Factory Division.

“Northvolt is driving the battery production to build a battery with very low Co2 footprint. Our Digital Enterprise portfolio will support Northvolt in building a state-of-the-art battery plant. We are excited to go in as a partner in this project,” said Ulf Troedsson, President and CEO of Siemens Nordics.

Once completed in 2020, Siemens intends to purchase batteries from the factory, making Northvolt a preferred supplier. Siemens will support the partnership through an investment of EUR 10 million.

Siemens sees the Northvolt initiative as a reference project for the battery production of the future, which will rely on the integration and digitization of the entire value chain: from the design of the battery cell through production planning, engineering and production to services.

The technology partnership is set up around two main areas of collaboration:

Cutting edge technology. Use of the Siemens’ Digital Enterprise portfolio, encompassing everything from manufacturing planning and design software to automation, including industrial communications networks and cloud solutions, will allow Northvolt to optimize its battery production and sharpen its competitive edge.

Supply of lithium-ion batteries. Siemens intends to purchase batteries from Northvolt once its large-scale production facility is up and running. The companies are also exploring potential areas for joint development programs.

“The European industry is moving rapidly towards electrification. With its world-class expertise within electrification, automation and digitalization, Siemens will become an important technology partner, supplier and customer to Northvolt in this coming transition. Once we begin large-scale production, our aim is to supply the greenest lithium-ion batteries in the world,” said Peter Carlsson Co-Founder and CEO, Northvolt.