Ball Corporation agrees to sell its metal beverage packaging facilities in China
Ball Corporation today announced an agreement to sell its metal beverage packaging facilities in China to ORG Technology Co. Ltd., a leading Chinese metal packaging company, for approximately $225mn total transaction consideration including cash, plus potential additional consideration related to the relocation of an existing facility over the next several years. Ball Corporation supplies innovative, sustainable packaging solutions for beverage, personal care and household products customers, as well as aerospace and other technologies and services.
Employing 17,500 people worldwide with reported 2017 net sales of $11bn, the transaction is subject to customary regulatory approvals and is expected to close during the second half of 2019.
Assets included in the sale are beverage can and end plants in Beijing, Foshan, Hubei and Qingdao, China, and associated contracts and other related assets. As part of the transaction, Ball also will license its beverage can and end technology to ORG in China, and reinvest approximately $50mn, largely from the anticipated relocation proceeds, in ORG's shares, while agreeing to cooperate on future commercial opportunities with mutual customers by leveraging the expertise of ORG in China and Ball in the markets it serves.
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"This arrangement allows each party to leverage its own geographic strengths, while allowing Ball to continue our disciplined approach to capital allocation by freeing up capital that does not generate our required returns," said John A. Hayes, chairman, president and CEO.
Ball will continue to serve the growing demand for sustainable aluminium beverage packaging in other parts of Asiafrom its wholly owned Myanmar facility and joint ventures located in Vietnam, Thailand, South Korea and Taiwan.
Proceeds from the sale will support Ball's ongoing global growth initiatives and multi-year share repurchase program. Today's announcement will have an immaterial effect on Ball's 2019 goals of $2bn of comparable EBITDA and free cash flow in excess of $1bn.
Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC is serving as financial advisor to Ball Corporation, and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is serving as Ball Corporation's legal counsel.
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.