SEOUL, Dec. 14 (Korea Bizwire) — SK Innovation Co. has invested in an electric vehicle (EV) battery plant in China in the latest move to boost its production capacity amid growing demand for zero-emission cars in the world’s largest auto market, people familiar with the matter said Monday.
The South Korean EV battery maker acquired a 49 percent stake in EVE Asia Co., a subsidiary of Chinese EV battery maker EVE Energy Co., through a debt-equity swap deal, they said.
EVE Asia runs an EV battery plant in the Chinese southern city of Huizhou.
The deal will allow SK Innovation to jointly operate the plant capable of producing EV battery cells totaling 10 gigawatt hours (GWh) per year, beginning next year.
It marks SK Innovation’s third joint venture investment in Chinese EV battery plants as the South Korean EV battery maker seeks to respond to the fast-growing EV market in the world’s second-largest economy.
Currently, SK Innovation runs an EV battery plant in Changzhou, east China, with Beijing Automotive Group and Beijing Electronics.
SK Innovation’s joint venture factory with EVE in the eastern city of Yancheng will begin operation next year.