Dundee gigafactory hopes dashed after funding deal
A Scottish battery plant’s new Dutch owner has raised €15 million to scale up production, but is focusing the bulk of its expansion plans on home soil rather than Scotland.
LionVolt — a spinout from TNO’s Holst Centre in Eindhoven, the Netherlands — acquired the assets of collapsed AMTE Power from the administrator in December and will develop its solid-state battery technology at its plant in Thurso in the north of Scotland.
However, the fresh equity funding, which brings the company’s total raised so far to €30m, will be used eventually to build a gigafactory in Eindhoven to make batteries for EVs, a move that seems to have killed off AMTE’s ambition for a similar plant in Dundee.
AMTE Power had planned a plant in the city producing eight million cells a year and creating more than 200 jobs. But it ran out of money, falling into administration and its assets sold.
It specialised in lithium-ion and sodium-ion cells used in high performance EV batteries and long-duration energy storage. LionVolt now owns the company’s battery-cell manufacturing and production businesses.
LionVolt claims its batteries weigh 50% less and provide 200% better performance compared to the most advanced lithium-ion batteries available today.
Sandeep Unnikrishnan, CTO of LionVolt, said the deal “helps us mature our innovative 3D battery technology quicker by leveraging the manufacturing expertise from the team in Scotland, thereby reducing time-to-market.”
LionVolt has secured space to set up its first pilot production plant at the Brainport Industries Campus (BIC) in Eindhoven.
Kevin Brundish, the former CEO at AMTE Power, became CEO of Lionvolt last September, three months before it picked up the UK firm’s assets from the administrator.