The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Germany and Norway, Annalena Baerbock and Anniken Huitfeldt, visited sustainable battery materials producer Vianode, an Elkem company, in Kristiansand, Norway.
Vianode has developed a range of synthetic graphite products for batteries with unique performance characteristics and produced with significantly lower CO2 emissions than today’s standard materials – supporting the ambitions of leading battery cell and automotive manufacturers.
Elkem Fiskaa in Kristiansand, Norway, is the site of the company’s industrial pilot plant, which has been established to prepare the basis for evaluating full-scale production. A potential first full-scale plant for Vianode will produce graphite for more than 1 million EVs per year, making a significant contribution to a European battery value chain.
Helge Aasen, Elkem’s CEO, together with Stian Madshus, General Manager Europe for Vianode, welcomed Mmes. Baerbock and Huitfeldt with a presentation of Elkem and Vianode and tour of the industrial pilot plant for battery materials production.
“The market for battery materials is growing at an exponential rate and developing sustainable value chains is critical for the green transformation. Vianode aims to become a leading producer of sustainable battery materials, and this represents an attractive growth opportunity for Elkem. As a leading global hub for the automotive industry, Germany is one of the key markets both for both Elkem and Vianode. We highly appreciate this visit by the two foreign ministers and the dialogue with stakeholders on building a European battery industry,” says Elkem CEO, Helge Aasen.
Founded in 2021, Vianode currently has around 50 employees. The company builds on Elkem’s experience in advanced material solutions as well as its in-house research and development resources. An investment decision for a potential first-phase plant is expected during the first half of 2022.
Vianode recently announced a transaction where Hydro and Altor each will acquire 30% ownership in Vianode, while Elkem will retain the remaining 40% ownership. Hydro and Altor both add significant experience and expertise in developing large-scale industrial projects in the battery value chain. The transaction is subject to formal approval by all parties and regulatory approvals, including competition authorities.