Electric vehicle battery company Britishvolt is powering ahead with its £3.8bn gigafactory in Northumberland, its first full-scale plant.
The project is receiving funding from the government through its Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF), delivered by the Advanced Propulsion Centre.
The ATF is a funding programme with the aim of creating a sustainable, zero emission automotive supply chain in the UK. The fund is a mechanism to deliver the UK government’s 10-point plan for a green industrial revolution and its recent Transport Decarbonisation Plan.
At the same time BV announce that Tritax and abrdn are becoming its partner to fund the build of the project, shell and core, as well as to develop the associated supplier park. Tritax is the leading investor in UK and European logistics real estate and is joining BV in partnership with abrdn’s global real assets and investment capabilities.
Britishvolt says the new gigafactory will create 3,000 high-value jobs. In addition to those directly employed on the Northumberland site, the project will also deliver a further 5,000+ indirect roles in the wider UK supply chain.
The factory plans to build enough cells each year for over 300,000 electric vehicle battery packs, equivalent to 25% of current UK vehicle manufacture.
Over the next few weeks BV will make a series of follow up announcements including customer agreements and R&D collaborations, relationships with blue chip UK automotive sports car brands and technology releases.
Peter Rolton, Britishvolt executive chairman, commented: “This announcement is a major step in putting the UK at the forefront of the global energy transition, unlocking huge private sector investment that will develop the technology and skills required for Britain to play its part in the next industrial revolution.
“The news is the first step in creating a commercialised battery ecosystem that perfectly aligns with the existing R&D ecosystem. Britishvolt will be the anchor for attracting further sections of the supply chain, be it refining or recycling, to co-locate on the Britishvolt site. This not only shortens supply chains but also allows for partners to access the abundance of renewable energy on site to truly power low carbon, sustainable battery production.
“It will also allow us to catapult our unique tailor-made business proposition on a global scale, with sites already selected for development in other countries.
“I’m especially proud that this is such a major boost for Northumberland – the county of my birth – bringing around 3,000 direct highly-skilled jobs and another 5,000+ indirect wider supply chain roles into the region.
“This is a truly historic day and marks the start of a truly exciting move towards a low carbon future. One with Britishvolt batteries at the very centre of that strategy.”