By Dave Brown — Exclusive to Lithium Investing News
Headwinds for some manufacturersIn an interview with Lithium Investing News Paul Gifford, an advanced level battery consultant explained his analysis for future Department of Energy [DOE] funding, “I think there is a down side for any company that has not successfully competed for DOE money. There certainly was a lot out there and I would think there would be a level of credibility to the technology in being selected to receive DOE funds. But, having said that, the company that will be most successful will secure a contract with a major company. Having contracts with companies like Fisker might be nice, but you can not get the [sales] volumes you need for low cost.” Resource nationalism? Vice President Joe Biden said earlier this year, "[t]he question is which nation is going to seize the future. Some nation is going to grab it by the throat. One of the nations of the world is going to lead the world in green energy and technology." The roller coaster journey that has followed Ener1 from its inception into the battery business in late August 2005, to January, when it filed for bankruptcy, to its revitalization as a private company in March certainly has some links to Russia. A Russian bank lent Ener1 up to $100 million in September 2010, and by the end of the next month the company had agreed to supply lithium batteries to the Russian power grid. Russian appetite for lithium technology Earlier in the year, a large lithium battery plant was opened in Novosibirsk, on the West Siberian plain, as a joint venture between a Chinese lithium battery manufacturer and RUSNANO. It is anticipated that the factory, called Liotech, will produce up to 500,000 lithium batteries per year. The batteries will be used to power electric vehicles and larger bus batteries in addition to a variety of energy storage applications and emergency power supplies. Lithium exploration and production companies to benefit The global demand for lithium is a current theme, whether it is initiated from the US or whether Russia attempts to become more prominent. As the electric vehicle industry takes a firmer foothold, both lithium production companies and exploration projects should generate higher levels of investment interest.
Securities Disclosure: I, Dave Brown, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article. Russian Capitalist Acquires Lithium Battery Manufacturer Ener1 from Lithium Investing News