Envision AESC, the Japanese EV battery maker owned by China’s Envision Group, said it planned to build a plant in Florence, South Carolina, to supply batteries to BMW’s plant in near by Spartanburg.

Envision said it would spend US$810m to build a factory with initial production capacity of 30 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of battery cells per year employing 1,170 people when operations start in 2026.

The supplier had previously said it would supply BMW with “new technology battery cells which offer 20% more energy density, faster charging speeds and an extended range of up to 30% more than current batteries. These would be for new EV models to be produced at Spartanburg by 2030”.

Envision already has a battery factory in Tennessee and another under construction in Kentucky which will have combined annual capacity of 70GWh. Envision said the new South Carolina plant would will be powered by net zero energy.

US MD Jeff Deaton said: “South Carolina already has an outstanding automotive footprint and we are delighted to offer new jobs in the high growth electrification segment, to attract and retain the state’s highly skilled workforce.

So far Envision AESC has announced plans for 13 plants worldwide, in China, Japan, USA, UK, France and Spain, with capacity for 400GWh by 2026.

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