EIB lends Umicore €350 million for EV battery material research

The European Investment Bank will grant Belgian Umicore an eight-year loan of 350 million euros for research. The money is intended for the technological development, innovation, and recycling of batteries for e-cars. In 2022, Umicore invested 316 million euros, or 7,6% of its revenues, in research and development.

Umicore’s battery materials technologies, innovation roadmap, and complete battery materials supply chain, which spans refining, the production of both precursor materials and cathode active materials, and their recycling, are vital contributors to the transition to cleaner mobility and the European Union’s Green Deal ambitions.

Battery-related projects

The new loan for Umicore aligns with the European Investment Bank’s pledge to allocate an additional €45 billion to promote the production of new technologies to help achieve climate goals. Over the past five years, the European Investment Bank invested €2.8 billion in battery-related projects.

Last year, the European Investment Bank provided around 88 billion euros in loans to new projects. Of that amount, €49 billion was intended for green and climate-friendly initiatives. The bank wants to have provided 1,000 billion euros in green loans by the end of this decade. The counter, which has been running since 2021, already stood at €349 billion at the end of last year.

Recycling

Umicore’s electric vehicle battery material technologies are aimed at entry-level, mass-market, and high-end vehicles, with technologies ranging from NMC (nickel, manganese, and cobalt) to future HLM (high lithium manganese) and next-generation solid-state and sodium-ion battery technologies.

The group’s battery materials research centers in Europe are in Olen (Antwerp, Belgium), Kokkola (Finland), Nysa (Poland), and Hanau (Germany). Materials for electric vehicle batteries are recycled on an industrial scale in Hoboken (Antwerp, Belgium). The listed company wants to invest almost 4 billion euros worldwide in new factories and developing and recycling battery materials in the coming years.

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