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Umicore secures latest deals to ensure access to battery materials market

Wed, 12/04/2019 - 14:00 -- Paul Crompton

Belgium multinational Umicore’s path to securing a raw and recycled lithium-ion battery materials supply chain saw two deals struck in as many weeks.

In a long line of deals in the past year, Umicore confirmed on 2 December it had completed the acquisition of the cobalt refining and cathode precursor activities in Kokkola, Finland.

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Firm reveals plans for Africa’s first lithium-ion gigafactory to supply the energy storage and EV markets

Fri, 11/15/2019 - 12:56 -- Paul Crompton

With a raw battery materials supply to rival anywhere in the world, Africa seems the perfect place to build a lithium-ion battery manufacturing plant, yet North America, Europe and Asia have been the locations of choice— until now.

The Megamillion Energy Company aims to be Africa’s first large-scale producer of lithium-ion batteries and plans to build a 32GWh per year facility by 2028 for both the energy storage and electric vehicle markets.

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Battery materials firm hires lithium-ion expert to drive EV market penetration

Thu, 11/14/2019 - 14:54 -- Paul Crompton

Graphite One has appointed a lithium-ion battery expert as its new chief technology officer to lead the Canadian battery materials firm’s move into the electric vehicle market.

Dr. Shane Beattie will be responsible for leading the company’s plan to process and manufacture high grade coated spherical graphite products for electric vehicle batteries and energy storage systems.

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Umicore sign deal to supply 80,000 tonnes of lithium-ion cathode materials to Samsung

Wed, 11/06/2019 - 14:14 -- Paul Crompton

Battery materials firm Umicore will begin supplying Samsung SDI with around 80,000 metric tonnes of NMC (Nickel Manganese Cobalt) lithium-ion cathode materials next year after signing a multi-year strategic agreement. 

The majority of the cathode materials will initially be produced in Korea, with additional volumes supplied from Umicore plants in different regions. 

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Japan-China venture ‘to build battery materials plant’

Mon, 09/09/2019 - 09:33 -- Paul Crompton

Tokyo-based JFE Chemical Corporation is reportedly joining forces with Chinese companies to establish a battery materials plant in China to supply the domestic and overseas electric vehicles market.

JFE is acquiring a 40% stake in Chinese joint venture company Wuhai Baojie New Energy Materials with China’s Baowu Carbon Materials & Technology Company holding a 51% stake, China’s state Xinhua News Agency said. The remaining stake will be taken by local firm Tianhe Carbon Corporation.

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Lithium Australia to test cathodes using LFP recycled from lithium-ion batteries

Tue, 08/13/2019 - 11:59 -- Paul Crompton
Lithium Australia to test cathodes using LFP recycled from lithium-ion batteries

Battery materials firm Lithium Australia is to test the performance capabilities of coin cell cathodes using recycled lithium phosphate (LP) after recovering the material from old lithium-ion batteries for the first time.

The material, recovered from mixed metal dust, will be made into lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) cathode powder at the company’s wholly-owned subsidiary VSPC’s cathode powder pilot plant, in Brisbane, Australia.

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Jaguar Land Rover urges UK giga-investment plan

Fri, 07/05/2019 - 13:05 -- John Shepherd
Jaguar Land Rover urges UK giga-investment plan

Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) has called for “giga-scale battery production” to be launched in the UK, as the company revealed plans to manufacture a range of new electric vehicles in England.

JLR said the plans for its Castle Bromwich plant near Birmingham marked “the next significant step in delivering on the company’s commitment to offer customers electrified options for all new Jaguar and Land Rover models from 2020”.

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Australia-India lithium refinery project under evaluation

Sun, 06/23/2019 - 22:29 -- John Shepherd
Australia-India lithium refinery project under evaluation

Australia-listed Neometals has signed a binding memorandum of understanding with Indian company Manikaran Power to jointly fund the evaluation of developing “India’s first lithium refinery”.

A final investment decision (FID) on creating a 50-50 joint venture for the refinery will be taken after completion of a feasibility study, Neometals said.

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Johnson Matthey ramps up ‘high-energy’ material investment

Fri, 05/31/2019 - 12:24 -- John Shepherd
Johnson Matthey ramps up ‘high-energy’ material investment

UK-based Johnson Matthey (JM) is ramping up investment in developing its “ultra-high energy” battery cathode material and plans to open customer application testing centres in the UK and Japan.

JM said it has made “significant progress” in commercialising its enhanced lithium nickel oxide (eLNO) material— and has signed its first long-term supply agreement for raw materials with Canada’s Nemaska Lithium. 

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Umicore expands battery materials business with cobalt deal

Fri, 05/24/2019 - 10:45 -- John Shepherd
Umicore expands battery materials business with cobalt deal

Belgium’s Umicore is to acquire Freeport Cobalt’s cobalt refining and cathode precursor activities in Finland as an “important step” toward expanding the company’s battery materials business.

The deal, which is expected to be finalised by the end of 2019, is for a total consideration of US$150 million on a debt and cash free basis, plus the value of the working capital to be taken over at closing, which at the end of March was approximately $40m.

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