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Morrow Batteries to build the first giga battery cell factory in Norway

Morrow Batteries will build battery cell production in Norway in order to meet increasing market demand and lead the drive for more sustainable batteries.

OSLO, NORWAY, June 3, 2020 / -- Morrow Batteries will in the coming years build and rapidly scale up battery cell production in Norway in order to meet increasing market demand and lead the drive for more sustainable batteries.

Dual-track technology strategy

To meet the rapidly increasing demand Morrow will initially manufacture cells based on the currently best available technology. However, Morrow inherits a technology platform which will, within the next decade, enable the factory to produce batteries that would be more sustainable, more cost effective and have better performance than the current generation of battery technology.

Green and cost-competitive cell factory

The giga battery cell factory will be located in the Agder region in the south of Norway which has a significant surplus of competitively priced renewable energy. It is also very close to a number of suppliers of critical raw materials and key European markets.

This will enable the factory to become both highly cost competitive and one of the greenest battery factories in the world. Significant amount of upstream processes such as precursor preparation and active material synthesis, to the actual cell manufacturing and close loop recycling, will be 100% powered by renewable energy.

The Agder region also has a long tradition and a strong base of globally competitive electro-chemical process industry. This will help secure the factory with a highly skilled and experienced workforce.

Strong and committed industrial owners

The two lead investors of Morrow are Agder Energi and NOAH, owning 39% and 40% respectively. Agder Energi is one of the largest producers of renewable energy in Norway.

It is partly owned by Statkraft, Norway’s state-owned renewable power producer, and a number of municipalities in Agder county. NOAH is an industrial company owned by the investor Bjørn Rune Gjelsten, who has a long history of building industry in Norway.

Towards a more sustainable battery

One of the key tenets of Morrows strategy is to significantly improve the environmental impact of batteries. Morrow’s strong environmental focus reflects the fact that one of the initiators of Morrow is the environmental foundation Bellona and its founder Frederic Hauge. Bellona has a long history and commitment to the environmental cause since it’s foundation in 1986.

As early as 1988, Frederic Hauge and Bellona imported the first electric car to Norway together with the well-known pop group A-ha in their fight for electrification, resulting in a range of favorable regulatory changes for electric cars. 20 years later, in 2009, he met with Elon Musk and Tesla.

He then became convinced that the battery revolution for cars was here. Bellona teamed up with Tesla to introduce the company to the Norwegian and European market. Tesla choose to start up Tesla sales in Norway as one of first countries outside USA and has since been a success story. It is safe to say that the sustained effort from Bellona has speed up the transition to electric cars.

In 2010, Bellona started to scout for more environmentally friendly ways to produce batteries. As part of this process, Bellona came across Graphene Batteries which was working on Lithium-Sulfur technology development. Graphene Batteries has since achieved significant technological breakthroughs that have been independently validated by Fraunhofer, Europe's largest application-oriented research organization.

In 2017, Bellona became partner and co-owner of Graphene Batteries through the company BEBA, with NOAH as a seed investor. In 2020, BEBA, NOAH and Graphene Batteries joined forces with Agder Energi to establish Morrow Batteries. BEBA will continue as the Bellona Foundation’s company to accelerate battery ventures and industry.

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