EnerSys (NYSE: ENS), the global leader in stored energy solutions for industrial applications, announced that it has entered into a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding with Verkor SAS, a European leader in battery technology, to explore the development of a lithium battery gigafactory in the United States.
Under the Memorandum of Understanding, the companies are developing plans, determining the optimal new factory location, and evaluating various funding and operating structures for this manufacturing facility. This new factory represents a long-term opportunity that will enable growth for both companies and allow EnerSys to optimize cell sizing in battery solutions for its customers, providing independence from non-domestic cell suppliers.
Verkor, based in France, is committed to providing high performance, low-carbon, locally based battery cells and modules. Verkor has developed a proven process for designing and manufacturing electrodes, battery cells and modules. Verkor is rapidly increasing its production capacity in France, with a 150 MWh per year pilot line in Grenoble (France) and a first gigafactory of 16 GWh per year starting production in 2025, in Dunkirk (France), serving major customers including the car manufacturer Renault.
“Establishing a U.S. lithium-ion cell supply is a critical element of our supply chain strategy,” said EnerSys President & CEO David M. Shaffer. “EnerSys is accelerating the global clean energy transition by significantly expanding our production of lithium-ion batteries across a broad range of end markets and applications. As we look at the best ways to meet the existing and rapidly growing demand for lithium-ion batteries, highly efficient local manufacturing is essential. This U.S. factory will help us meet our customers’ needs, including those with specific manufacturing requirements for domestic sourced batteries. With Verkor’s expertise in lithium-ion electrode chemistry and high-performance products, they are the ideal manufacturing partner for us. We are particularly excited about the scale and flexibility this factory will provide us, with both large production capacity and the ability to create custom cells. Partnering with an industrial expert such as Verkor de-risks and accelerates our common ability to execute successfully on this project.”
Benoit Lemaignan, Co-Founder and CEO of Verkor, said, “While our current effort is focused on the delivery of our Verkor Innovation Centre in Grenoble (France) and our first gigafactory in Dunkirk (France), it is important for us to explore our future growth in other geographies and other markets. Expanding to North America together with a well-established innovation leader like EnerSys is a great way for us to fulfill our primary mission, ie. to further accelerate the energy transition with low carbon high performance batteries and expand Verkor’s product line-up into the industrial mobility applications.”
Shaffer added, “We expect our current U.S. battery production to continue to yield credits through the Inflation Reduction Act that will help us fund this important manufacturing facility. EnerSys’ eligibility for the IRA incentives reinforces the critical nature of the products and services we provide. In turn, we expect our future production of lithium batteries in the U.S. will enable further benefit from the incentives of the IRA.”