How could Brexit affect EU manufacturing?
Following the recent news of reichelt elektronik enjoying explosive growth and expanding its catalogue, CEO Ulf Timmermann has offered the following statement regarding how the EU referendum could affect the established German business and the rest of Europe:
“The topic of Brexit is causing a deep furrow of anxiety with many European merchant businesses; what effects will a vote to ‘Leave’ have on legislation, tax and customs regulations etc? What complications will it cause for us all? Will business between companies in the rest of the EU and UK customers be seriously harmed?
"Personally, I am pretty relaxed about the referendum: we love the business we've established with our customers in UK and we're keen to see it grow further. Our physical and online logistics are all developed in-house and managed from Germany so we are confident that we won’t need to change our policies and procedures. But we’re the lucky ones, not everyone is in that fortunate position.
"We're ready and happy to respect the outcome of the referendum, whatever it might be, and to make any adjustments necessary for continuing our UK business. We wouldn’t even consider ceasing our trade in the UK.
"Finance is one of the most common Brexit concerns; from our point of view, we intend to keep our pricing as competitive as before. Ordering at reichelt in Germany will still be the right decision for business pros in electronics, as for tinkerers and makers – we'll hold our doors wide open for business and consumer customers, whether they are in the EU or not.”
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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.