Panasonic eyes Norway-based European battery business with Equinor and Hydro

by John Shepherd
Partners to assess market for 'green battery business in Norway'. Photo: Panasonic
Japanese lithium-ion battery producer Panasonic is set to launch a European battery business, in partnership with Norwegian energy company Equinor and industrial group Hydro.

The companies said today they have signed a memorandum of understanding "to assess the market for lithium-ion batteries in Europe and mature the business case for a green battery business located in Norway”.

The proposed business would be based on Panasonic’s technology and target the European market for electric vehicles and "other applications”.

Initial talks are to be held with potential automotive and non-automotive customers, in addition to Norwegian and European authorities. The partners expect to announce their findings around the middle of 2021.

Battery storage

Panasonic executive VP Mototsugu Sato said: "This collaboration combines Panasonic’s position as an innovative technology company and leader in lithium-ion batteries, with the deep industrial experience of Equinor and Hydro, both strong global players, to potentially pave the way for a robust and sustainable battery business in Norway.”

Al Cook, executive VP of global strategy and business development for Equinor, said: "We believe that battery storage will play an increasingly important role in bringing energy systems to net zero emissions.”

Europe is a region of increasing interest to battery makers, especially Asian companies, keen for a slice of the region’s future lucrative EV supply chain market.

Norwegian company Freyr is also developing a lithium-ion giga battery production complex in Norway.

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