SK Innovation, Ford Motor to build largest EV and battery plant in US

7:15 AM, 12th October 2021
SK Innovation's EV battery plant that is under construction in Georgia, US.

SEOUL, KOREA: South Korea’s SK Innovation Co Ltd said that it established a joint venture with Ford Motor Co to build the largest battery production plant ever in the US with an investment of $11.4 billion in constructing battery plants and EV assembly plants in the two areas. This is the largest investment announcement by Ford in its 118 years of history, and the largest investment for battery plants in the US so far.

The joint venture of two companies will be under the name BlueOvalSK, and the at the battery production sites will be in Tennessee and Kentucky. This investment is expected to enhance the policy to expand electric vehicles (EV) supply jointly promoted by the US government and companies.

SK Innovation revealed its plan to invest up to $6.4 billion in the BlueOvalSK battery plant by 2027 in the form of providing the capital to its US battery corporation SK Battery America (SKBA).

SK Innovation also announced that it would invest $4.45 billion in the construction these BlueOvalSK’s plants. This amount is equivalent to its 50 percent stake in the joint venture.

The production site in Tennessee will be built at Ford’s 3,600 acre Blue Oval City with annual capacity of 43 GWh. The plants in Kentucky will occupy the site of 1,500 acre with a production capacity of 86 GWh per year. In total, the plants are expected to produce 129 GWh annually. This will allow for annual production of more than one million batteries, including long range packs for SUVs and trucks.

Being the largest single investment in SK Innovation’s history, this investment in BlueOvalSK will help the company become the leading battery maker in the US market. This will enable the company to exceed the goal of securing 200 GWh production capacity per year across the globe by 2025.

“This is a transformative moment where Ford will lead America’s transition to electric vehicles and usher in a new era of clean, carbon neutral manufacturing,” Ford executive chair Bill Ford said. “With this investment and a spirit of innovation, we can achieve goals once thought mutually exclusive – protect our planet, build great electric vehicles Americans will love, and contribute to our nation’s prosperity.”

“This is our moment – our biggest investment in decades – to help build a better future for America,” “We are moving now to deliver breakthrough electric vehicles for the many rather than the few. It’s about creating good jobs that support American families; an ultra-efficient, carbon neutral manufacturing system; and a growing business that creates value for communities, dealers, and shareholders,” said Jim Farley, Ford president and CEO.

“We are proud to be partnering with Ford as they open a new chapter in automobile history,” said Jee Dong-seob, president of SK Innovation’s Battery Business. “We are excited to be taking this decisive leap together, as partner, and to bring about our common vision for a cleaner planet.”

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