Britishvolt and VKTR sign MoU to secure supply chain from Indonesia

Britishvolt and VKTR, a new division of Bakrie Autoparts, a part of Bakrie & Brothers, have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to partner on the development of a transparent and lower carbon supply of nickel sulphate from Indonesia, as well as a battery technology R&D roadmap.

The first phase of the cooperation between VKTR and Britishvolt will focus on the establishment of a nickel sulphate facility in Indonesia, that will align with BV’s ESG commitments and principles, to ensure the supply of the battery raw material to Britishvolt’s first full-scale Gigaplant in Northumberland, UK.

The Parties intend to develop a joint venture under the corporate name of INDOVOLT BV VKTR. The business plan shall initially and primarily focus on upstream supply security for nickel through to sulphate conversion and in line with Britishvolt’s Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards. VKTR shall secure the portion of nickel supply for Britishvolt in terms of tonnage and timing, which should be confirmed within the next five months.

As the world transitions away from fossil fuels to renewable energy, low carbon, sustainable batteries will be at the very core of a successful switch. Currently there are clear market signals of the need to secure strategic relationships in order to guarantee supply of key raw materials such as nickel sulphate.

Indonesia is the world’s largest nickel producing country and is rapidly building out its own electric vehicle industry. This deal will support the country’s 2060 net-zero commitments.

Bakrie & Brothers is a leading industrial company listed on the Indonesia stock exchange.

The initial agreement will be followed with a study looking at the potential to develop a battery Gigaplant in Indonesia, and potentially other locations. A prime focus of the partnership will be on how to drive embedded carbon out of the supply chain. It is BV’s aim to get the carbon content of its battery production to 25kg/KWh, from a global average of 93kg/KWh.

The news follows on from BV’s strategic partnership with Glencore for the supply of responsibly sourced cobalt, another vital battery raw material.

Orral Nadjari, CEO/Founder of Britishvolt, said: “Indonesia has enormous, unprecedented potential that will see global investment flow into the country as it aims to become a world leader on the international battery stage. I am delighted to be part of Indonesia’s journey to net-zero, and I look forward to seeing the outcome of this partnership with VKTR.

“I am also proud to be helping establish a secure supply of nickel to the UK at a time when raw materials are in the spotlight as the age of the battery really gets going. Secure, sustainable supply chains are essential for a successful energy transition.”

Anindya Bakrie, Chairman and Founder of Bakrie Centre Foundation; Chairman of Supervisory Board at the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said: “VKTR is pleased to have signed the MoU with Britishvolt and is looking forward to collaborating with the battery pioneer to develop a greener battery manufacturing supply chain.

“The support of VKTR for this partnership is part of the forward-thinking commitment of Bakrie Group, on its 80th anniversary. We embark on a new chapter focused on the 3Cs – Climate, Covid-19 and Capital trends. VKTR will help support the energy transition in Indonesia, in the race to zero.”

Timon Orlob, Global Chief Operating Operator, Britishvolt, said: “These announcements demonstrate Britishvolt’s commitment to securing essential battery cell ingredient nickel sulphate. We will bring our ESG considerations and expertise to the supply chain. At the same time we will create in-country value in Indonesia, rather than refining just export.

“The deal gives us security of nickel from the largest source in the world. Indonesia has G20 presidency and by partnering with BV it will help accelerate the country’s 2060 net-zero ambitions.”

Image: courtesy Britishvolt

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