Exide to manufacture batteries and storage solutions for EVs

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 02 Jul 2018

Exide Industries, one of India's largest manufacturer of lead-acid storage batteries and power storage solutions provider and Leclanche SA, one of the world's leading energy storage solution companies, headquartered in Switzerland, have recently announced a joint venture to build lithium-ion batteries and provide energy storage systems for India's electric vehicle market and grid-based applications.

As part of the JV, Leclanche will provide access to its know-how and intellectual property for lithium-ion cells, modules and battery management systems and Exide Industries will leverage its extensive sales network and brand. Through this JV, the companies are aspiring to be leading providers of storage solutions for electric vehicles and energy storage applications in India and will also contribute to developing solutions to increase the amount of renewable energy that is used and reduce India's dependence on fossil fuels.

The JV's production plant will be based in Gujarat. Exide Industries, with the aim of setting up large-scale manufacturing facilities of lithium-ion batteries, will be the majority shareholders and Leclanche will be the strategic minority shareholders of the JV. The company claims that a module and battery pack assembly line is expected to be operational by Q2 2019 and a lithium-ion cell production plant is expected to be in operation by mid-2020. In the intervening period, cells will be sourced from Leclanche's plant in Willstatt, Germany.

The JV will focus on e-transport, stationary energy storage systems and speciality storage markets. In e-transport, the target segment is fleet vehicles including e-buses, e-wheelers and e-rickshaws. 

Gautam Chatterjee, CEO of Exide Industries, said, "Leclanche is the perfect partner for us in India. This ideally complements our leading position in the lead acid storage battery market in India and will allow us to take the lead in the lithium-ion battery industry, which is expected to grow significantly in the next few years.”

Anil Srivastava, CEO of Leclanche, said, "Exide's selection of Leclanche as its partner of choice is a testament to Leclanche's deep know-how and IP and a significant endorsement of our world-leading cell and energy storage technologies, which are the product of our strong heritage and a decade of investment in lithium-ion R&D and production.”

Leclanche is looking for giga-scale procurement volumes from India, thus, helping in reducing costs and increasing recurring annuity revenues, and in generating recurring stable revenue growth.