LG Chem aims to enforce its battery material patent rights amid intensifying technological competition with the aim of dominating the global advanced battery market.
LG Chem proposed to license out its high-nickel cathode material patent to China-based cathode material suppliers. To that end, LG Chem plans to enforce its patent rights against other global cathode material companies. Licensing refers to a contract in which the patent holder agrees to provide the right to use the patent to a third party and receive royalties in return. This makes it clear that LG Chem will not exclude the possibility of legal actions against any third-party infringers.
The licensing offers were made to companies that mainly operate in the manufacture of high-nickel cathode materials. High-nickel cathodes are essential materials for high-performance EVs as they play a crucial role in increasing the energy density of batteries to extend the driving range.
In March 2022, LG Chem, the world’s first producer of nickel-cobalt-manganese (NCM) cathode materials, purchased more than 40 patents relating to high-nickel cathode material from Hanyang University, a private research university in Korea. Among them is a key ‘orientation patent’ that allows the driving range of EVs to increase by 20 to 30 percent, based on the structural characteristic of cathode materials. These patents are widely recognized in the relevant industry as essential to produce high-nickel cathode materials and registered in many countries, including Korea, China, U.S., and Europe.
With this licensing, LG Chem expects to promote the development of the battery material industry with other global cathode material suppliers. By doing so, the company expects to generate new sources of profits as the demand for technology to produce key battery materials, such as high-nickel cathode, is expected to rise. According to SNE Research, a global marketing research firm, the global cathode materials market is forecasted to grow 233% from $35.6 billion this year to $82.9 billion in 2030.
“LG Chem’s high-nickel cathode materials patent plays a determinant role in the performance of lithium-ion batteries and is undoubtedly necessary for the advancement of the high-performance EV industry,” said an LG Chem official. “We are willing to offer our patent portfolio to battery materials providers worldwide through various types of intellectual property business models.“