08/11/2021

Finnish Minerals Group’s and Beijing Easpring’s CAM plant project in Kotka is proceeding as planned

The parties have now agreed to continue more detailed investment planning based on a definitive feasibility study.

Finnish Minerals Group and Beijing Easpring Material Technology have been investigating and negotiating the possibility to establish a CAM plant in Kotka, Finland with the initial capacity of 50,000 t/a and potential for future expansion for the production of cathode active material for lithium-ion batteries. As part of the work, the companies have carried out the definitive feasibility study (DFS) and agreed to continue the cooperation on the plant project.

Founded in 2001, Beijing Easpring is a developer, manufacturer, and supplier of lithium-ion battery cathode materials. The company was listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange in 2010. It currently has production facilities in Changzhou Jintan and Haimen in Jiangsu province.

In preparation for the plant investment, Finnish Minerals Group and Beijing Easpring are looking to set up a joint venture company for the construction and operation of the plant. Finnish Minerals Group is aiming at becoming a minority owner in the joint venture company.

“The rapidly growing production of lithium-ion batteries in Europe requires the establishment of a cathode active material industry in Europe. Based on the studies we have carried out together, the production facility planned to be established in Kotka is well set to succeed in the European market both in short and long term. The plant is also an opportunity for Finland to further develop its high technology expertise and create new economic activity in the Kymenlaakso region and beyond. For our company, it is great to partner up with Beijing Easpring, one of the world’s leading producers of cathode active materials for lithium-ion batteries,” says Matti Hietanen, CEO of Finnish Minerals Group.

“Our cathode active material plant in Kotka is a key step for Easpring to carry out global layout. In the future, Easpring will continue to evaluate the feasibility of capacity expansion with the Kotka project, and production establishment possibility in other important regions globally as well,” says Yunlong Guan, Deputy General Manager in charge of marketing and sales at Beijing Easpring.

“The battery material plant that is planned to be established in Kotka now has an international partner, and we see that the project is proceeding well in line with our goals. Kotka provides a competitive operating environment for this sustainable development project, and we are fully committed to support the work. We also warmly welcome the plant to our city and Finland, and we wish everyone involved in the project success with the next steps,” says Esa Sirviö, Mayor of the City of Kotka.

Preparatory work on the plot to start at the turn of the year

One of the companies’ next steps is to draw up an environmental permit application for the plant, which they intend to submit in early 2022. In addition, preparatory work in Keltakallio industrial site will soon be started for the establishment of a project office and the earthworks related to the plant.

“Several engineering consultancies and design agencies have participated in the DFS work on the facility, and we are all very happy that the project has progressed as planned. Our goal is to initiate the commissioning and start-up of production in 2024 at the latest. Overall, the initial capacity of the plant will be 50,000 tonnes a year,” says Vesa Koivisto, SVP, Battery Operations at Finnish Minerals Group.

Once operational, the plant will generate approximately 250 person-years of direct employment. The first regional economic effects, however, include the direct impact of construction and the multiplier effects of production and consumption, which will be reflected in several sectors.

 

More information for the media:
Matti Hietanen, CEO, Finnish Minerals Group, +358 40 823 8806, matti.hietanen(at)mineralsgroup.fi
Vesa Koivisto, SVP, Battery Operations, Finnish Minerals Group, +358 50 453 6322, vesa.koivisto(at)mineralsgroup.fi

Terms used in the text:
Cathode active material – a powdery end product used to manufacture cathodes, the most valuable part of the battery cell, in cell plants. Abbreviated as CAM.

 

Finnish Minerals Group

The mission of Finnish Minerals Group is to responsibly maximise the value of Finnish minerals. We manage the State’s mining industry shareholdings and strive to develop the Finnish value chain of lithiumion batteries. In addition, we are engaged in long-term technology development of the mining and battery industry. Through our work, we contribute to Europe moving towards electric transport and a more sustainable future.
www.mineralsgroup.fi

Beijing Easpring Material Technology Co. Ltd.

Beijing Easpring Material Technology Co., Ltd. is a lithium-ion battery cathode material developer, manufacturer and provider, which was established in 2001 and listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange in 2010. The company has production facilities in Changzhou Jintan and Haimen in Jiangsu province. The main products of the company's lithium-ion battery materials business include technology research, production and sales of multi-element materials, lithium cobalt oxide and other cathode materials, as well as multi-element precursors and other materials. The company's application markets include automotive power batteries, energy storage batteries, digital consumer electronics and power tools, electric twowheeled vehicles and other small power lithium batteries.

Over the years, the company has accumulated the trust of many large customers with its outstanding independent research and development capabilities, advanced quality control system and rapid market response mechanism, established a good brand image in the domestic and foreign markets, and won an important industry position. The company's sales scope covers China, Japan, South Korea, Europe and the United States and many other countries and regions in the world.

The company's automotive power high-nickel multi-element materials are the first to be mass-produced in China and exported to Japan, South Korea, Europe and the United States in large quantities, and are used in high-end electric vehicles at home and abroad in large quantities. The company took the lead in developing multiple materials for energy storage in China, and this product has been used in large quantities in the international high-end energy storage market. The company's high-rate products are in a leading position in the domestic high-end small lithium battery market such as model airplanes and drones, and occupy a relatively high market share.

Easpring has net sales of EUR 420 million and about 1200 employees.