A couple of Tesla alumni, with backing from Swedish investors, have announced a plan to build a massive Li-ion battery factory, perhaps in Sweden or Finland. Their ambitious goal is to bring the cost of batteries down to $100/kWh.
Tesla’s former Vice President of Supply Chain Management, Peter Carlsson, and another former Tesla supply chain executive, Paolo Cerruti, have launched a new startup called North Volt. Their experience in supply chain management could be highly relevant to establishing a new source of EV batteries.
The Swedish government has shown interest in securing Tesla’s future European Gigafactory. North Volt is currying government support as well.
The company plans to secure financing and choose a location within the next two years, and start construction in 2019. The plan is to be producing 32 GWh worth of battery packs by 2023.
“We have a number of players who have access to the project as of now,” said Carlsson. “We hope to build sufficient confidence in the project over the next year, when we really need to build up substantial capital to put the shovel in the ground and build a factory. It is estimated to cost 40 billion kroner [about $4 billion] in four steps. Vinnova and the Swedish Energy Agency were early supporters.”