Ultium Cells, the electric car battery joint venture between LG Energy Solution and General Motors, is preparing to send request for quotations (RFQ) to equipment companies for its second factory in Spring Hill, Tennessee, TheElec has learned.
This means it will likely send letters of intent (LOI) to equipment firms around the end of the year at the earliest.
Around 2.7 trillion won will be spent to build Ultium Cell’s second factory. It will have an annual production capacity of 35GWh, same as the first factory in Lordstown, Ohio.
As the second factory will have the same production line setup as the first factory, firms that received orders for the first factory will likely also win those for the second factory.
For mixing equipment, TSI is a strong candidate for the second factory. For lamination and stacking kits, Shinjin Mtec and Naintec are potential suppliers. For degassing, YTS is sure to get the order as it is the exclusive supplier.
SK Innovation, meanwhile, is close to wrapping up its order placements for its second factory in Georgia. Yunsung F&C is supplying the mixing equipment.
For assembly kits, Youil Energy Tech, Mplus, Hana Technology and Woowon Technology are potential suppliers. For the back-end process equipment, Toptec, SFA and Wonik PNE are likely to be beneficiaries.
Orders from Blue Oval SK, the joint venture between Ford and SK Innovation, is also raising hopes for more orders for South Korean equipment companies. Blue Oval SK will spend around 6 trillion won to build new battery factories. SK Innovation has already earmarked 3 trillion won for its two factories in Georgia.
SK and Ford are planning manufacture 60GWh of battery in the US, starting in mid-2020s.
The joint ventures in the US rely on their South Korean partners LG and SK for the factory setups. And unlike in China, LG and SK don’t need to use local firms for the equipment. Most of the equipment will be from South Korean suppliers, which means the competition to win orders will be fierce among them.
Besides those from the US, these equipment makers can also expect new orders from LG and SK’s new factories in Europe.
SK will be sending RFQs for its third factory in Hungary to suppliers around August. Meanwhile, LG will likely decide on its additional spending plan for its factory in Poland around the first half of 2022.