September 15, 2020 Read More →

India’s Greenko Energy planning $1 billion investment into battery storage sector

Mint:

Greenko Energy Holdings aims to invest around $1 billion in a new battery storage business that also includes a plan to produce lithium-ion batteries in India for power grid-scale applications and electric vehicles (EV), said a person aware of the development.

The fresh capital for renewables 3.0 investment will be deployed by the Hyderabad-based company to acquire and develop lithium-ion battery technology, and for its manufacturing and application playbook. This comes against the backdrop of the single-largest foreign clean energy investment announcement in India made by Japan’s ORIX Corp. for $980 million in Greenko for a 17% stake.

Sovereign funds GIC Holdings Pte. Ltd and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA)-backed Greenko’s pivot towards battery storage comes amid India readying its proposed ₹18,000-crore production-linked incentive package for battery storage manufacturing, Mint had reported earlier. India also plans to issue tenders for setting up Tesla-style gigafactories for cell and battery manufacturing.

As China dominates the lithium-ion cell manufacturing, India wants to avoid a repeat of events with solar equipment manufacturing where China leveraged its first-mover advantage to capture the market. The value chain comprises processing of raw materials and manufacturing of separators, cathodes, electrolytes, anodes, cells, and battery storage packs.

This assumes importance given India’s ambitious clean energy targets and the intermittent nature of electricity from clean energy sources. In such a situation, large grid-scale battery storages can help maintain spinning reserves to support round-the-clock demand for electricity.

Greenko is reportedly in talks with Japan’s NEC Corporation to acquire Massachusetts-headquartered NEC Energy Solutions, which holds the intellectual property rights for megawatt-scale lithium-ion batteries. Queries emailed to a Greenko spokesperson on Sunday morning remained unanswered.

[Utpal Bhaskar]

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