Sagunt battery gigafactory attracts a South Korean manufacturer to Tarragona

The Volkswagen gigafactory in Sagunt has attracted a South Korean manufacturer to Spain, which supplies a key component of electric car batteries. ILJN Materials will invest 600 million euros in a factory in Tarragona (200 kilometers from Sagunt) that will employ 500 workers. It is the second largest Volkswagen supplier (after Iberdrola) to make a millionaire investment driven by the Gigafactory. Generalitat Valenciana is in talks with other unnamed major suppliers that plan to relocate to the 200-hectare Parc Sagunt II reserved for the Gigafactory and ancillary companies.

ILJIN Materials, through its subsidiary IMS Technology, is part of a holding of 62 companies associated with PERTE (project linked with European restructuring funds) managed by Volkswagen for the electrification of the car in Spain (Future: Fast Forward Project). Volkswagen group’s PERTE also includes auto supplier company Gestamp (which has a factory in Almussafes) and Iberdrola (giga will invest 500 million in Valencia to supply the factory with renewable energy). PERTE, led by the German group, includes Lithium Iberia, which has announced it will extend the lithium exploitation project at Extremadura at the Las Navas mine (Cañaveral) to 30 years. and the Valencian company Órbita Ingeniería (specialized in the production of industrial machinery and headquartered in Alcàsser). Major companies grouped in PERTE include Bosch and Técnicas Reunidas.

Led by Volkswagen, PERTE is the largest business group in the history of the automotive industry, with companies from eleven autonomous communities and, among all, covering the entire electric vehicle value chain.

Catalonia was targeting the huge factory of batteries that would eventually be built in Sagunt. With the advent of ILJN Materials it has managed to attract some of the utilities industry. The facility to be located in Mont-roig del Camp will be 30,000 square meters. The South Korean company will produce an ‘electrofoil’, a copper plate patented by the multinational, thinner than a human hair and considered a key element for lithium batteries used in electric cars.

Founded in Seoul in 1968, the South Korean firm has 1,100 employees worldwide and production facilities in Iksan (South Korea) and Malaysia. Its customers include LG Energy Solution, Samsung SDI, Northvolt and Volkswagen. Northvolt is a Swedish battery manufacturer owned by Volkswagen itself.

After Sagunt’s statement

ILJN decided to settle in Tarragona after Volkswagen announced that its battery factory in southern Europe would be located in Sagunt. Representatives from the company’s various technical profiles traveled to the Catalan municipality four times to verify location, environment, features and communication. The decision was made in April, following a visit from the ILJN CEO and company executives. Catalan Generalitat will make public hotlines for foreign investment available to the South Korean firm.

The ILJN factory will be operational in 2024, two years before the Sagunt gigafactory starts producing battery cells. The Ministry of Industry, Tourism and Trade welcomed the decision of Korean company Iljin Materials to set up a factory in Spain for key battery components for electric cars, the first to open in Europe.

Source: Informacion

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