Expansion on track at AMTE, Thurso battery cell firm

Thurso-based battery cell developer AMTE Power, which went public in March, said on Friday it is “in regular dialogue with elements of the UK government to secure funding for the expansion of production capacity to gigafactory levels and is on track to confirm plans and select a site in 2022.”

AMTE Power is a developer and manufacturer of lithium-ion and sodium-ion battery cells for specialist markets.

The company focuses on the requirements of specialist customers including the makers of high-performance sports cars. It collaborates with automotive companies including Jaguar Land Rover, Cosworth and Williams.

In a trading update for the 12 months to June 30 2021, AMTE Power CEO Kevin Brundish said: “We are at an exciting point in the development of our portfolio of innovative battery cells.

“Most recently, we were chosen by the UK Government’s Advanced Propulsion Centre to lead a new automotive battery cell project involving the close participation of several global car manufacturers who will be road testing our batteries.

“Recent announcements by the major automotive brands on their EV manufacturer plans coupled to the UK government’s clear determination to establish Britain as a global centre for battery manufacture is an ideal backdrop for AMTE Power.

That said, our focus remains on the development of multiple cells for a variety of specialist markets, not just automotive, all with sufficient scale to make them highly commercially attractive to us.

“We are on track with our development plans as set out at the time of our IPO in March and we look forward to announcing further updates on our progress.”

AMTE said in the trading update: “This has been a successful period for the company which includes the company’s admission to AIM alongside an over-subscribed placing in March 2021 raising gross proceeds for the company of £12.9m.

“This gives AMTE Power a financially strong platform from which to complete the first phases of product development and support the ongoing establishment of its gigafactory.

“For the period under review the company is pleased to confirm that it expects revenue and total reported losses after tax to be in line with market expectations.

“As a result of the additional funds raised at IPO the company has accelerated investment in its people and the preparatory work around the gigafactory, resulting in an increase in operating costs …

The company secured £3.8m in project income during the period, of which 29% has been recognised in the year just completed.

“This income is made up of both UK and European grants and commercial development income following on from strong customer engagement.

“A further £1.0m of potential commercial income is contingent on certain projects achieving their milestones.

In June of this year, AMTE Power, confirmed it had been selected as the lead in a new Government funded 3 year project called ULTRA focused on bringing two AMTE Power lithium-ion batteries to automotive readiness alongside key industry brands.

“AMTE Power will receive £2.3m over the next three years as the project progresses (included within the £3.8m above) …

A key part of the company’s strategy centres on increasing its existing manufacturing capability to a capacity of approximately 2GWh per annum in the UK.

“The company is in regular dialogue with elements of the UK government to secure funding for the expansion of production capacity to gigafactory levels and is on track to confirm plans and select a site in 2022 …”

AMTE also gave an update on its Australian joint venture.

Alongside UK production expansion the company has continued to develop its relationship with InfraNomics, a leading infrastructure provider, to create a new JV that will manufacture battery cells for use in power storage systems with initial plans for 2GWh per annum production levels.

“The new venture is expected to operate from the ‘Lithium Valley’ Kwinana Industrial zone in Western Australia, an area dedicated to the development of Lithium related products and which contains one of the largest raw material deposits in the world for li ion batteries.

“This not only co-locates the production with the supply base, it also seeks to take advantage of recent trade agreements with Australia to facilitate supply chain access to the UK operations.”