■ Announced an investment plan for their joint venture BlueOvalSK’s factories in Tennessee and Kentucky on Sep. 27, 2021 (US local time)
– Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford, Ford President and CEO Jim Farley, Governors of Tennessee and Kentucky, President of SK Innovation’s Battery Business Jee Dong-seob will attend the event
■ The investment by two companies to reach USD 11.4 billion, signaling the birth of the biggest-scale battery plant ever in the US.
– Annual production capacity will be 129 GWh
■ SK Innovation to become the largest battery maker in the U.S. after securing Ford’s supply, one step closer to be among the global top positions
■ Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford: “This is a transformative moment where Ford will lead America’s transition to electric vehicles and usher in a new era of clean, carbon neutral manufacturing”
■ President of SK Innovation’s Battery Business Jee Dong-seob: “We are excited to be taking this decisive leap together, as partner, and to bring about our common vision for a cleaner planet.”
A battery production company established by a joint venture between a giant automaker from the U.S. and a leading battery maker from South Korea will build the largest battery production plant ever in the States. This event is expected to enhance the policy to expand electric vehicles (EV) supply jointly promoted by the U.S. government and companies.
On September 27th (US local time), SK Innovation and Ford announced the locations of the battery production sites of BlueOvalSK, the joint venture of two companies at Tennessee and Kentucky and their large-scale investment plan.
SK Innovation and Ford will attend two announcement events on September 28th (US local time) in Stanton, Tennessee and Glendale, Kentucky, where BlueOvalSK will be located. The events will be attended by Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford, Ford President and CEO Jim Farley, Governor of Tennessee Bill Lee, Governor of Kentucky Beshear, and President of SK Innovation’s Battery Business Jee Dong-seob, among others.
Ford and SK Innovation announced on the day that they plan to invest a total of USD 11.4 billion in constructing battery plants and EV assembly plants in the two areas. This is the largest investment announcement by Ford in its 118 years of history, and the largest investment for battery plants in the U.S. so far.
Right after the Board of Directors’ meeting on September 27th (KST), SK Innovation revealed its plan to invest up to USD 6.4 billion in the BlueOvalSK battery plant by 2027 in the form of providing the capital to its US battery corporation SK Battery America (SKBA).
SK Innovation announced that it would invest USD 4.45 billion in the construction these BlueOvalSK’s plants. This amount is equivalent to its 50% stake in the joint venture. The decision was made after a meeting held by the company’s Board of Directors on September 27th (KST).
The BlueOvalSK battery plants will boast the largest ever in the U.S so far. The production site in Tennessee will be built at Ford’s 3,600 acre Blue Oval City with annual capacity of 43 GWh. The plants in Kentucky will occupy the site of 1,500 acre with a production capacity of 86 GWh per year. In total, the plants are expected to produce 129 GWh annually. This will allow for annual production of more than one million batteries, including long range packs for SUVs and trucks.
Being the largest single investment in SK Innovation’s history, this investment in BlueOvalSK will help the company become the leading battery maker in the U.S. market. Combining these plants with two other SK Innovation’s EV battery plants built in Georgia, the company will be able to produce 150 GWh annually in the U.S. alone. Consequently, this will enable the company to exceed the goal of securing 200 GWh production capacity per year across the globe by 2025.
The U.S. Congress is considering plans that would expand incentives for EVs and EV batteries produced in the States to promote the use of EVs and establish the industrial ecosystem. If passed, this would further strengthen SK Innovation’s business position in the U.S.
“This is a transformative moment where Ford will lead America’s transition to electric vehicles and usher in a new era of clean, carbon neutral manufacturing,” Ford Executive Chair Bill Ford said. “With this investment and a spirit of innovation, we can achieve goals once thought mutually exclusive – protect our planet, build great electric vehicles Americans will love, and contribute to our nation’s prosperity.”
Jim Farley, Ford President and CEO, stated, “This is our moment – our biggest investment in decades – to help build a better future for America,” “We are moving now to deliver breakthrough electric vehicles for the many rather than the few. It’s about creating good jobs that support American families; an ultra-efficient, carbon neutral manufacturing system; and a growing business that creates value for communities, dealers, and shareholders.”
“We are proud to be partnering with Ford as they open a new chapter in automobile history,” said Jee Dong-seob, President of SK Innovation’s Battery Business. “We are excited to be taking this decisive leap together, as partner, and to bring about our common vision for a cleaner planet,” he added.
(Photo 1) SK Innovation’s EV battery plant that is under construction in Georgia, the U.S.
(Photo 2) SK Innovation’s EV battery plants in the U.S.