Reliance Industries’ unit to acquire Lithium Werks

Reliance Industries’ unit to acquire Lithium Werks

Reliance Industries’ unit to acquire Lithium Werks 954 850 Energy Storage Journal

March 17, 2022: India’s Reliance Industries said on March 14 a subsidiary unit had agreed to acquire battery maker Lithium Werks in a $61 million deal to expand energy storage and EV battery development for the Indian market.

Reliance New Energy Limited said it had signed definitive agreements to “acquire substantially all of the assets”, including the entire patent portfolio of the Netherlands-based lithium iron phosphate (LFP) group, its manufacturing facilities in China, “key business contracts and hiring of existing employees as a going concern”.

Reliance Industries chairman, Mukesh Ambani (pictured), said the deal “will enable us to accelerate our vision of establishing India at the core of developments in global battery chemistries — and help us provide a secure, safe and high-performance supply chain to the large and growing Indian EV and energy storage markets”.

“LFP is fast gaining as one of the leading cell chemistries due to its cobalt and nickel free batteries, low cost and longer life compared to NMC and other chemistries,” Ambani said.

‘Battery ecosystem’

Other commentators say that the advantages of safety and price with LFP batteries ignore the fact that there is no commercial gains to be had by recycling them. Their lack of valuable elements such as cobalt, manganese and nickel, makes them an end-of-life drawback and expense.

Reliance said that, combined with agreements announced last December to acquire UK sodium-ion battery tech developer Faradion, it plans to set up an “end-to-end battery ecosystem”, including the manufacturing of battery cells, cathodes, anodes and electrolyte.

Lithium Werks was founded in 2017 through acquisition of various assets of Valence Technology and A123 Systems and has nearly 200MWh annual production capacity including coating, cell and custom module manufacturing capabilities.

The acquisition should be complete by June, subject to various regulatory and other conditions.