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Verkor selects Dunkirk for its first Gigafactory

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February 1, 2022

Press release, Uncategorized

French industrial company Verkor announces the selection of the port city of Dunkirk (Hauts de France) for the construction of its first Gigafactory for the development of low-carbon battery cells designed to support Europe’s net-zero goals.

  • First delivery of low-carbon high performance batteries for electric vehicles scheduled for July 2025 to be manufactured in Dunkirk
  • Manufacturing capacity to expand from 16 GWh in 2025 to 50 GWh by 2030.

The announcement marks a significant milestone for Verkor, founded in 2020, realising the company’s vision and accelerating its goals for battery development. Dunkirk is the most promising site out of the 40 investigated by Verkor in France, Spain and Italy. Spanning more than 150 hectares, the site will meet growing demand from European and international car manufacturers, as the roll-out of high-performance electric vehicles continues to gather pace across the continent.

The site meets all the requirements for a Gigafactory in terms of land, logistics, energy capacity, proximity to customers, access to a qualified workforce, and scalability. Up to 1,200 direct jobs and more than 3,000 indirect jobs are expected to be generated during the first phase of the project. The Verkor Gigafactory in Dunkirk will create a new ecosystem of players and solutions to support the development of Europe’s battery value chain. The high performance, low carbon batteries from Verkor’s site will contribute to the continued excellence and innovation of the French and European automotive industry.

Once operational, the Gigafactory will supply several customers, and most notably Renault Group after signing a strategic partnership with Verkor last summer.

Benoit Lemaignan, CEO of Verkor: “We are eager now to work with our partners to unite all the winning conditions to build the best battery-cell factory in the world. Dunkirk is the best choice among many other great opportunities, and I really want to thank all the people in the territories, as well as our partners including Groupe IDEC, who supported us in this process.”

Verkor and the French National Commission for Public Debate are now moving forward with the national consultation process for the site.

Agnès Pannier-Runacher, the French Minister of Industry: “Mastering the entire battery value chain is critical to the transition to electric mobility. I welcome this new important step by Verkor. Their choice of location reinforces “the electric battery valley” that is taking shape in the Hauts de France, as well as its dynamic ecosystem. It sends a positive signal to Dunkirk’s industrial platform, which has key assets in the sector. Verkor, like many players in the value chain, can rely on the Government’s ongoing support under the France 2030 plan.”

The construction of the Gigafactory is scheduled to begin in 2023. Research and development will continue to be based out of Grenoble where the construction of the Verkor Innovation Centre (VIC) is already under way. The innovations developed there will be a prelude to the manufacturing excellence of Verkor’s first Gigafactory.

 

About Verkor

Founded in July 2020, Verkor is a French industrial company based in Grenoble. With the backing of EIT InnoEnergy, Groupe IDEC, Schneider Electric, Capgemini, Renault Group, EQT Ventures, Arkema, Tokai COBEX and FMET managed by Demeter. Verkor will ramp up low-carbon battery manufacturing in France and southern Europe to meet the growing demand for electric vehicles — and electric mobility as a whole — and stationary storage in Europe.

Verkor is developing an enticing business model based on agility, sustainability and governance that is attracting the best talents from around the world. Its strong and agile team continues to grow as new challenges arise. Verkor is leading a unifying project that brings together the best partners for establishing the entire value chain in Europe and ensuring the optimal use of skills and resources. Verkor will draw on these strengths to open its entirely digital 4.0 pilot line in 2022. A model of excellence, competitiveness and resource efficiency, this innovation will be integrated into the Gigafactory due for construction in 2024.

More information on www.verkor.com

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