Manufacturer Sunlight, an Athens based battery production and energy storage solutions company, has announced an ambitious plan to expand its lead-acid and lithium-ion batteries output.

The plan includes a €30 million investment for the expansion of the existing infrastructure of the company’s lead-acid battery plant based in Xanthi, northeastern Greece.

The upgrade will gradually increase annual production capacity of lead-acid motive power products from 4GWh to 5.3GWh and will render the Xanthi-based manufacturing unit the largest in the world for industrial, motive, lead-acid batteries.

An additional €20 million will be invested in the production of lithium-ion batteries aiming at offering global markets integrated lithium products for off-road mobility, industrial use, and Energy Storage for renewables.

Sunlight has also announced expansion plans of its assembly plants in Verona, Italy and North Carolina, United States.

We are keen to meet both current and future demands in the off-road mobility and RES energy storage, by scaling up capacity and rendering our Xanthi industrial park a true giga-factory” Lampros Bisalas, Sunlight CEO, said in a statement.

Sunlight wants to develop energy management systems with the use of Big Data analysis, AI and Machine Learning tools.

European Battery Alliance

The company has secured a €50 million subsidy by Greek and EU funds to finance its lithium-ion R&D center in Athens.

The funds will be allocated in the context of the European Battery Alliance (EBA).

The European Battery Alliance was launched in 2017 by the European Commission, with the aim to make Europe a global leader in sustainable battery production and use.

Batteries are considered a strategic part of Europe’s clean and digital transition and a key enabling technology, essential to the automotive sector’s competitiveness.

Sunlight now focuses on lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) production, a type of battery suited to forklifts, locomotives and robots that perform short tasks with breaks in between.

These markets are billions of dollars,” said Bisalas in an interview to Reuters, in August 2020. “We see a very big opportunity there, because we see lithium ion producers, especially from China, being focused on EVs.”

The €2.9 billion IPCEI (Important Projects of Common European Interest) project on batteries will run until 2028 and is expected to leverage a further €9 billion of private sector investment.

Sources: Sunlight, Reuters