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Northvolt raises US$1.2 billion and produces first BESS at Poland plant

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European lithium-ion gigafactory firm Northvolt has started producing battery energy storage systems (BESS) at its Northvolt Dwa facility in Poland, while also securing a US$1.2 billion convertible note.

The BESS production is part of the commissioning process for the facility in Gdansk while the funding is an extension of the US$1.1 billion convertible it signed in July 2022, covered by Energy-Storage.news at the time. A convertible note is a debt instrument that converts to equity at a later date instead of paying interest.

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The Gdansk facility spans 25,000 square feet and finished construction in May this year, with production line validation set to conclude soon for customer deliveries to commence later in 2023. It received an EU grant last year.

Northvolt’s new debt funding was provided by the Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO), global asset manager BlackRock, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments), and pension investor Omers. Omers took part in last year’s convertible note funding while IMCO concluded a US$400 million note with Northvolt in June.

It means Sweden-headquartered Northvolt has now secured over US$9 billion in equity and debt to deliver on over US$55 billion in orders from key customers mainly in the automotive space, including BMW, Scania, Volvo Cars and Volkswagen Group, but also more recently the world’s largest BESS provider Fluence.

Alexander Hartman, CFO of Northvolt, said: “We have found a committed group of investors that understands both the urgent need and massive financial potential in enabling the swift electrification of society. However, there is a long road ahead if Europe and North America are to reach their full potential as leaders of the energy transition. To create a pathway for global warming below 1.5°C, both the private and public sector need to mobilize resources at an unprecedented scale.”

Northvolt is also developing a gigafactory in Germany, a dedicated cathode material production facility in Sweden, while it started operations at a battery recycling facility also in its home country last year.

Europe has a substantial pipeline of lithium-ion gigafactory projects, with annual production capacity set to hit 1,117GWh by 2030 according to Benchmark Mineral Intelligence, while the US’s figure is 1185.6GWh, as of June this year.

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