Redwood Materials advancing on expansion into European markets

Redwood Materials advancing on expansion into European markets

Redwood Materials, a Li-ion battery recycler and parts remanufacturer, is seeking further expansion into Europe, a move that would allow it to strengthen and expand its newly formed collaboration with VW America.

Blue View

Redwood Materials recycles battery production scrap and end-of-life batteries.  The company was founded in 2017 and has since formed strategic partnerships with large automotive OEMs and battery manufacturers. Notably, the company has partnered with Volkswagen Group of America to recycle all end-of-life batteries from Volkswagen and Audi electric vehicles.  There has been speculation that the company might strike another partnership with Volkswagen for its cars in Europe. Redwood’s strategy relies on strategically positioned factories to form close partnerships with upstream suppliers.  In the USA, they have operations close to the Tesla–Panasonic Gigafactory factory.  The two companies are also linked by CEO JB Straubel, who served as Tesla's CTO for 15 years.

This week, it was reported that Redwood plans on expanding into Europe, with Germany tipped as the first choice and the company setting up an office in Mannheim with former BASF manager Dirk Demuth leading European expansion. Germany houses a large number of automotive OEMs (including Volkswagen) but cost of energy in the country is reportedly cause for concern. Scandinavia has also been touted as an option, with detailed discussions and cost estimates underway which would strengthen their ties with Volvo.

Redwood's move should be viewed in the context that the European Commission’s ‘battery passport’ proposal is expected to start in 2024 with a carbon footprint declaration, a recycled content disclosure by 2027, and a minimum recycled Co, Li, Ni and Pb content by 2030 (increasing in 2035). The regulation aims to ‘close the loop’ and reduce carbon emissions from battery tech, support the recycling industry with collection rate targets, close the capacity vs feedstock gap and bring in efficiency and material recovery targets.  Germany’s Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action funded €8.2M to a consortium of 11 partners, including Volkswagon, BMW, BASF and Umicore, and has already started to develop battery passports ahead of the upcoming EU regulatory framework. 

  • 08 Sep 2022
  • European Union
  • USA
  • Lithium
  • Cobalt
  • Nickel
  • Automotive
  • Batteries

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