A rechargeable Lithium-ion battery for the Volkswagen ID.3 electric car. Photo: Ronny Hartmann / AFP
Swedish electric car battery maker Northvolt said on Wednesday it has raised billions of dollars in fresh funding to expand a giant new factory under construction in the north of the country in order to meet massive demand from key customers and partners such as German carmaker Volkswagen.
Northvolt said in a statement it raised $2.75 billion (€2.3bn) from existing shareholders, including Volkswagen, Goldman Sachs and a group of Swedish pension funds.
The battery maker said the cash will be used to expand its first “gigafactory”, Northvolt Ett, “from the earlier plan of 40 GWh to 60 GWh of annual production capacity in order to meet the increased demand from key customers, including a $14-billion order from Volkswagen announced earlier this year.”
The factory will commence production “later this year”.
Northvolt said it has now raised more than $6.5 billion in total equity and debt with the aim of building more than 150 gigawatt hours (GWh) of annual production capacity in Europe by 2030. That will include the construction of two more giant factories in Europe over the coming decade, one possibly in Germany.
In addition, Northvolt said it has so far secured “in excess of $27 billion worth of contracts” from key customers, including BMW, Fluence, Scania and Volkswagen, to support its plan, “which also includes establishing recycling capabilities to enable 50 per cent of all its raw material requirements to be sourced from recycled batteries by 2030”.
Northvolt said it has so far secured “in excess of $27bn worth of contracts” from key customers, including BMW, Fluence, Scania and Volkswagen
In a separate statement on Wednesday, Volkswagen – which has a 20 per cent stake in the Swedish startup – announced it was maintaining its stake in Northvolt and would be contributing $620 million to the latest fundraising. It already invested €900 million in Northvolt in June 2019, acquiring the 20 per cent stake and a seat on its board of directors.
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