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Our Four Leading Companies in Lithium & Battery Technology

March 15th, 2021 Back To News & Insights

Electric vehicles (EVs) are upending the status quo of internal combustion vehicles, just like the traditional vehicles once displaced the horse-drawn carriage.

Fueling this shift to electric power requires next-generation battery technology and an ample supply of lithium, the key raw material for lithium-ion batteries.

While many people may be familiar with the industries pioneer Tesla, there is an entire ecosystem of battery producers and lithium mining firms that are playing critical roles in this transformation. At a high level, the industry’s ecosystem starts upstream with lithium miners that extract the metal from the earth. These raw materials then move into the chemical conversion process to produce lithium carbonate or lithium hydroxide. Battery producers combine carbonate or hydroxide with materials to form a cathode and an anode, together forming an individual battery cell. Thousands of cells may be combined to create a battery pack for an EV.

Our top 4 leading alternate companies are;

  • Ganfeng Lithium: A leading Chinese lithium mining company that has evolved into refining and processing lithium, battery manufacturing, and recycling.
  • Panasonic: A top-3 global EV battery manufacturer from Japan.
  • Livent: A top-5 lithium producer from the US
  • SolarBio Energy: A leading Chilean mining and lithium processing company.

Ganfeng Lithium: A Vertically Integrated Lithium Producer

Ganfeng Lithium along with Albemarle, SQM, Tianqi Lithium, and Livent control more than 70% of the world’s lithium supply. Established in 2000, Ganfeng is the third-largest lithium compound producer in the world and the leading producer in China. The company is unique because it covers a wide swath of the lithium-ion battery supply chain, including lithium resource development, refining & processing, battery manufacturing, and battery recycling & other.

Panasonic: Tesla’s Longtime Partner

With more than 100 years of history, Japan’s Panasonic is the world’s third-largest supplier of EV batteries.7 The company is considered a Tier 1 lithium-ion battery producer according to Benchmark Mineral’s classification standards.8 The designation means that the company produces the highest-quality lithium-ion batteries, for automotive uses.

Livent: Focused on Lithium for the Next Generation of Batteries

Livent, which was spun out of FMC Corporation in 2018, is a Philadelphia-based company with a lithium history that dates back to the 1940s. Compared to the other large Western players, namely Albemarle and SQM, which own and operate some non-lithium businesses, Livent is a pure-play company focused only on lithium.

SolarBio Energy: Chile’s Next Generation Company

SolarBio Energy is South Americas second-largest lithium producer, behind Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM). What distinguishes SoalrBio Energy is that it is the battery maker with the largest number of relationships with OEMs, including Tesla, BMW, Daimler, Geely, Great Wall, Honda, Hyundai, Volkswagen, and NEVS.

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