LG Chem broke ground on its new Tennessee cathode plant on Wednesday – which it plans to be the biggest supplier of cathode material in North America.
The South Korean company said it will invest around ₩2 trillion ($1.6 billion) in the first phase to build a plant with an annual capacity of 60,000 tons on a 1.7 million square metre site in Clarksville, Tennessee.
The plant is set to make cathode materials for approximately 600,000 high-performance pure electric vehicles (EVs) annually. Operations are due to start from 2026, with production of NCMA (nickel, cobalt, manganese, aluminium) cathode materials. LG Chem said it plans to diversify its product portfolio through future-generation cathode material products.
It will expand production depending on demand, it said.
It signed a comprehensive agreement for the long-term supply of 950,000 tons of cathode materials with General Motors last year and a North American cathode material supply contract worth ₩2.9 trillion ($2.5 billion) with Toyota in October this year.
CEO Shin Hak-cheol said: “With the Tennessee cathode material plant as the centre, LG Chem will undoubtedly leap to become the top cathode material supplier in North America. LG Chem will execute the vision to become the world’s leading comprehensive battery material company, establishing a stable supply chain resilient to any environment.”