Battery maker Envision AESC seeking potential investors to fund expansion-CEO

Chinese renewable energy group Envision‘s battery business is seeking potential investors, as it looks to fund a planned 30-fold expansion in its battery production capacity for electric vehicles (EV), the unit’s chief executive said.

Envision Automotive Energy Supply Corporation (AESC), which supplies Nissan Motor Co and its alliance partners Renault and Mitsubishi Motors Corp, is also in talks with automakers in Japan, Europe, the United States and China for new supply deals, its chief executive Shoichi Matsumoto told Reuters.

Matsumoto declined to comment directly on whether the company was considering an initial public offering to fund its expansion plan, saying all options are on the table.

Launched in 2007 as a joint venture between Nissan, NEC Corp (6701.T) and its subsidiary NEC TOKIN Corporation, the battery business was sold to China’s Envision Group in 2018.

It has been supplying batteries for Nissan’s EV Leaf, which had been the world’s top-selling EV, but sales of the vehicle started slowing in 2015. Envision AESC has also said it plans to supply batteries for Honda Motor Co (7267.T) and Mercedes-Benz (MBGn.DE).

The company hopes to break into the top-tier EV supply rankings by leveraging its more than a decade of battery production experience.

We have been able to devise a way to combine the quality and performance of Japanese technology with China’s sense of speed and cost competitiveness to gain a stronger competitive edge,” said the former Nissan executive.

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