French carmaker Renault said on Monday it had sealed partnerships with China’s Envision AESC and France’s Verkor to produce electric car batteries in northern France, Reuters reported.
Renault currently buys batteries for its Zoe model from an LG Energy Solution factory in Poland. However, the new partnership suggests that the EV maker intends to diversify its battery supply.
Renault promised to provide Envision with battery orders for five years, while Envision will give full play to its leading products and global operational capabilities to support Renault’s comprehensive electrification strategy.
“The combination of these two partnerships and Renault Electric City will create nearly 4,500 direct jobs in France by 2030, while developing a strong battery manufacturing ecosystem in the core of Europe,” Renault’s statement pointed out. The firm also said it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the French start-up Verkor to co-develop and manufacture high-performance batteries, with a view towards owning a stake of more than 20 percent in Verkor.
The Envision AESC factory in the French city of Douai will have an initial capacity of nine gigawatt hours (gWh) in 2024, with the aim of reaching 24 gWh by 2030.
Envision’s super factory is close to Renault Electric City’s production bases in Douai, Maubeuge and Ruitz, which will create 700 additional jobs in the region.
“France needs partners with green development prospects, innovative technology and determination, like Envision. I believe the company will accelerate the zero-carbon transformation in France,” French President Emmanuel Macron said on Twitter.
Luca de Mayo, CEO of Renault, said “the strategic cooperation between us is a milestone for Renault to enhance its competitive advantage in the field of electric vehicles. It will also propel Renault to produce 1 million electric vehicles in Europe by 2030.” Zhang Lei, CEO of Envision, is also said to be very glad about the partnership.
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Founded in 2019, Envision is a leading green technology enterprise, with the mission of “solving challenges for the sustainable future of mankind”. As the CEO Zhang expressed, “fifteen years ago, I established Envision, hoping to realize the harmonious coexistence of energy and environment”.
On April 22, Envision announced that it would achieve carbon neutrality at the operational level by the end of 2022 and the value chain level by the end of 2028.
On Monday afternoon, as the only Chinese entrepreneur to be invited, Zhang Lei attended the “Choose France” Summit held at the Elysee Palace.