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Editor's Blog

John Shepherd

Energy-starved Africa is a prime market for the massive deployment of battery energy storage technology

16/07/2019

According to the International Energy Agency, some 600 million people across the continent have no access to electricity… So, as BEST Battery Briefing reports, the multi-million euro cash boost for South African Pb firm Elektron Energy, to develop its bipolar battery tech, should be welcomed.

Interestingly, Elektron’s grant is derived in part from European Union funding. To date, EU battery R&D funding has been wedded to lithium-ion, so finally prising some cash out of the bloc for advanced lead technology is a revelation.

The lead industry should take note and press for more, especially as latest figures indicate the lead-acid market in Africa alone is expected to be worth more than US$1 billion by 2021.

Meanwhile, Germany’s BMZ Group has launched a tie-up with forklift firm Kion to extend lithium’s reach into the lucrative industrial trucks market within and beyond Europe.

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China keeps the faith in lead to bring home the bacon

Chinese new year officially started this week, heralding the ‘year of the pig’— for those unfamiliar with the Chinese zodiac.

 

China’s battery business still bearing fruit despite Apple’s gloom

Apple has blamed China’s economic slowdown almost entirely for the tech firm’s gloomy sales forecast— but there’s no sign of Chinese firms running out of power to stay ahead in the batteries game.

 

Investments energise batteries for 2019

As the year draws to a close, there’s no let up in battery activity, as our raft of investment-related stories reported this week show.

Battery honours even between Europe and Asia

It's quid pro quo between Europe and Asia this week, as BMW and Dräxlmaier announced plans to establish local battery production for electric vehicles in Thailand, whilst LG Chem are reportedly set to establish a second lithium-ion plant in Poland, in order to keep pace with ever-rising demand.

 

Splashing the cash in power plays for batteries

After months of guessing who might be an eligible suitor for JCI’s battery business, the wait is over. The sale of Power Solutions to investment firms seems an unlikely partnership. But a US$13 billion ‘dowry’ is not a bad start to building a relationship.

Study reveals true value of 'climate-friendly' lead

It’s taken a (presumably) very expensive study to tell the EU what most of us already know, as we report in the latest edition of our weekly e-newsletter, BEST Battery Briefing

Enersys wraps up mega deal, Trojan unpacks lithium surprise

Enersys has invested in an expensive gift with its acquisition of Alpha Technologies, as we report in the latest issue of BEST Battery Briefing...

 

EU energy chief’s about-face on lead?

At last, after months of lobbying, has the EU’s energy chief seen the light and is he now willing to level the playing field for lead-acid and lithium?

More cash to keep 'lithium dream' afloat as lead is left to tread water

It’s been a year this week since the EU launched its Batteries Alliance to challenge Asia’s dominance of the European lithium battery market. But after months of talking and little concrete action— other than conspiring to kill off lead-acid— the EU’s energy chief now wants to splash more taxpayers’ cash to 'make' things happen. Nothing of course to do with his bid to take over as European Commission president.

Battery diamond's Indian summer?

What’s going on at JCI? Speculation has been rife for several months that the firm’s batteries business, Power Solutions, could be coming up for sale.

 

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