Zhejiang Hangke is taking part in the equipment bidding process by BlueOval SK, the battery joint venture between SK On and Ford, for its factory in the US, TheElec has learned.
The Chinese equipment maker’s bid is a late entry and it will be competing with South Korean rivals Kapjin and Wonik PNE.
These companies will be pitching their formation and cycler equipment.
Hangke has previously won equipment orders from SK On for the South Korean battery maker’s factories in Ivancsa, Hungary, and Yancheng, China.
The Chinese company won orders worth 730 million yuan in total from the two factories __ sources said the company pitched its kits at lower than market prices.
The sources said South Korean equipment makers didn’t expect Hangke to take part in BlueOval SK’s bidding process due to the trade war between the US and China.
For example. Ultium Cells, the joint venture between LG Energy Solution and General Motors, also limited Chinese companies from taking part in supplying equipment for their planned factories. Most vendors used by the battery maker are from South Korea, Germany, and Japan.
If it wins an order, Hangke is planning to supply its equipment to a country with a Free Trade Agreement with the US and then to BlueOval SK factory.
BlueOval SK is planning to begin installing equipment at its factory in Tennessee in September next year. The factory is targeting to start mass production in August 2025.