Croatian EV batteries start-up Rimac Automobil is set to race into the battery manufacturing fast lane in a multi-million-dollar deal with Camel, one of China’s leading lead-acid firms, BBB has confirmed.
A spokesperson for Zagreb-based Rimac told BBB negotiations are under way but declined to give details.
Chinese lead-acid battery giant Camel is to build a pilot lithium-ion battery recycling and anode material production plant in Central China.
Camel said plans for the CNY5 billion ($791 million) facility is part of a “framework agreement”, signed with Hubei Province’s Gucheng County government, to create an industrial park for recycling and “cascade utilisation” of used lithium-ion batteries from electric vehicles, as well as the regeneration of battery materials.
Johnson Controls International (JCI), the biggest western player in the global battery market has fuelled speculation that it could be preparing to sell its Power Solutions division— essentially all of its lead-acid and lithium business.
And sources have told BBB the most likely buyer will be a Chinese player— perhaps Camel or Chilwee (also known as Chaowei) who both have the financial muscle to pull off such a deal.
Chinese battery maker Camel has signed an agreement with a US lithium battery company to commercialise a silicon-graphene material for use in making high-capacity anodes.
The deal with the California Lithium Battery Company (CalBattery) in Los Angeles was signed after a licensing agreement with developers at the Argonne Laboratory in Chicago in 2012.
Global lead consumption will grow less than expected due to a slowdown in demand from Chinese lead-acid battery manufacturers, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
The EIU sees global lead consumption at 3.1% in 2014/15, down from an earlier estimate of 3.6%, primarily due to China continuing to destock lead battery supplies, emission monitoring is tightened and further outdated capacity is closed.
Chinese battery company Camel Group has bought Yangzhou-based Apollo Battery for Rmb220m ($355.98m).
The company acquired 100% of the company from two Australian shareholders, Oriental Technologies and Indeveno Industrial Supply.