Wuxi Lead, a manufacturer of new energy equipment, and InoBat Auto, a European battery technology and manufacturing company, have signed a purchase contract for a lithium-ion battery production line in Voderady, Slovakia. Wuxi Lead will be the sole equipment supplier for the pilot phase of the project and will design, manufacture, and assemble a customised turnkey solution of lithium-ion batteries for InoBat. The initial production line, capable of producing 260,000 battery cells annually, aims to produce its first batteries by the end of 2022.
InoBat is a European based battery manufacturer with a battery research and development facility and pilot line under development in Slovakia. It is backed by a consortium of investors and technology companies, including strategic investors and partners such as Rio Tinto, CEZ, IPM, Matador, AEN, MSM Group, and Across. The company has also been approved for grant financing under the EU-sponsored ‘Important Projects for Common European Interest’ programme, and has already received a grant from the Slovakian Government.
Yanqing Wang, Chairman of Wuxi Lead, commented: “InoBat is one of our most important partners in Europe. Wuxi Lead will be the only equipment supplier to provide InoBat with the whole line equipment and services. At the same time, the whole production line will be equipped with the digital solution jointly developed by Wuxi Lead and Siemens. This cooperation between Wuxi Lead and InoBat represents a strong recognition of our products, technologies, and services. I believe we will build a battery manufacturing factory that will attract worldwide attention.”
Marian Bocek, Chief Executive Officer of InoBat Auto added: “Wuxi Lead is the world’s leading manufacturer of new energy equipment and this purchase contract represents another important milestone in the development of our advanced facility in Voderady. Given InoBat’s purpose is to supply customers with premium electric batteries that are custom-designed to meet their specific requirements, Wuxi Lead’s flexibility in chemistry, cell size and format provides us with important technological capabilities, supported by their localised service capabilities, including its professional pre-sales, after-sales and service team in Europe. This latest step demonstrates our consistent and continued progress towards one of our key strategic growth objectives of ensuring that Europe has a reliable and scalable EV-battery manufacturing base.
”The pouch line solution provided by Wuxi Lead for InoBat Auto adopts the leading high-speed stacking technology allowing for efficient and precise production. At the same time, the line is capable of fast changeovers of toolkits, enabling flexibility in cell formats and sizes.”
The contract covers the pilot phase of the project in Voderady, Slovakia, which focuses on rapidly developing the next generation of customised batteries. This R&D centre and a pilot line will identify the optimum cell chemistries to meet the exact requirements of vehicle makers or manufacturers. In the next phases of the project, InoBat will focus on a manufacturing scale-up through a number of planned global gigafactories.