Bidness Etc


Will This Battery Startup Spell Trouble For Tesla Motors’ (TSLA) Gigafactory?

One of the most promising growth catalysts for the American electric automaker, Tesla Motors Inc (TSLA), is its $5 billion battery plant dubbed the Gigafactory. Tesla hopes the massive battery factory – spread across 10 million square feet of production space – will commence operations in 2017 and churn out as many as half a million lithium-ion battery packs when it reaches full capacity in 2020, and that too at 30% lower cost.

A cheaper, more consistent source of battery packs is a crucial component of Tesla’s lofty sales objectives, which require the automaker to deliver 500,000 EVs around the world by the year 2020. But another lithium-ion battery startup is gearing up to bulk-produce batteries at least two years ahead of Tesla.

Bloomberg reports that a battery startup called Alevo is planning to build a battery factory in North Carolina, with the capacity to make 16.2 gigawatt-hours of lithium-ion grid batteries per year starting 2015. Bloomberg says Alevo’s battery factory could elevate global supply of lithium-ion battery packs by about 150% from 2013 levels, possibly nipping away at demand for other battery makers like Samsung SDI and Tesla.

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