Samsung SDI and battery cathode supplier EcoProBM will invest up to KRW 120 billion into establishing a joint venture this year. The two sides plan to complete a plant in Pohang before the year is out to begin producing next generation cathode in January, 2022.
EcoProBM said in a regulatory filing on Feb. 10 that the firm would invest KRW 72 billion, and Samsung SDI KRW 48 billion, based on their stakes.
Most of the supplies from the new CAM6 plant in Pohang is to go into Samsung SDI’s Hungary plant in the Göd area where the Samsung affiliate plans to begin producing next generation batteries in 2021.
“A JV is a big step, and it indicates that both Samsung SDI and EcoProBM are looking for long-term ties,” said one market watcher.
The CAM6 – already dubbed the Samsung SDI cathode line – is expected to boast an annual capacity of up to 70,000 tons. This means the line will ship up to around KRW 1 trillion worth of cathode, according to industry experts. That is about three-fold of the annual 26,000 tons produced from the CAM5 plant in 2019. EcoProBM had spent KRW 180 billion on this facility.
Samsung SDI had originally planned on receiving cathode through a supply contract with EcoProBM, but decided to opt for a JV after seeing that it would need more cathode for its battery plant in Göd.
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