South Korean energy and chemicals group SK Innovation Company announced it planned to spend KRW30trn (US$26bn) over the next five years to transition from carbon-intensive activity to more eco-friendly business.
It said it wanted to increase the ratio of eco-friendly business in the group from the current 30% to 70% by 2025, to reduce its carbon footprint and also to create new business opportunities.
Speaking at a press conference in Seoul, CEO Kim Jun also said SK was considering listing its battery business to raise funds to make the transition.
In April, SK Innovation agreed to pay KRW2trn (US$1.8bn) to settle a two-year long technology infringement dispute with LG Energy Solution.
The company listed its battery materials business, SK IE Technology Company, on South Korea’s KOSPI main stock exchange in May. Its shares doubled in value on the first day of trading.
SK Innovation is estimated to be the world’s sixth-largest EV battery manufacturer but its aim is to become number three by the end of 2022.
The top two are China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology Company Limited (CATL) and South Korea’s LG Energy Solution.
Kim confirmed his company has won more than 1 terawatt-hours of new EV battery orders estimated to be worth around KRW130m.
The company’s current automotive clients include the US operations of Volkswagen and Ford, Daimler in Europe and Hyundai Motor and Kia Corporation in Asia.
The company is currently building battery plants in South Korea, China, USA and Hungary.
SK Innovation and Ford last month agreed to spend KRW6trn on a 60 gigawatt hours EV battery plant in the USA. Overall the company plans to have 200GWh in global battery production capacity by 2025, yp from the current 40GWh.