UK battery manufacturer Britishvolt will collaborate with Italian design firm Pininfarina to build its planned large-scale gigaPlant on 80-plus acres of green industrial park in Bro Tathan in South Wales.
The 2.5m square feet plant, on the site of the former RAF base of Bro Tathan, is anticipated to be finished and operational by 2023, a Britishvolt spokesman told The Manufacturer. The initial investment of £1.2bn is described as one of the largest industrial investments in British history. The gigaplant will employ 3,500 skilled workers.
Start-up Britishvolt wanted to work with a design firm with expertise in batteries to create a facility sensitive to the surroundings and welcoming to the local residents. Pininfarina, a global design firm based in Turin marking its 90th anniversary this year, has been at the forefront of electric mobility since 1978 with the Ecos automotive prototype, the companies said in a joint announcement. The design studio continues to work in eco-sustainable and zero emission mobility and is fully committed to numerous electric propulsion solutions in the mobility market.
Britishvolt signs a collaboration agreement to create UK’s first gigaplant with design firm Pininfarina. Image credit: Britishvolt; Pininfarina.
“Britishvolt’s aim to become the world’s first zero carbon battery manufacturer aligns perfectly with Pininfarina’s expertise in creating green, high tech and innovative environments” said Orral Nadjari, CEO and co-founder of Britishvolt. “We believe in prioritizing an innovative design to match the future quality of our lithium ion cells. The balance between pioneering design and understanding of local culture is one Britishvolt is proud to take forward. With Pininfarina bringing the full force of its elegance and heritage in automotive design to architecture, we believe we can accomplish this desire.”
“Sustainable design is no longer an option to consider down the line,” said Silvio Pietro Angori, CEO of Pininfarina. “It’s a necessary commitment to create social and economic value for future generations.”
The Britishvolt project is still at an early stage, but it’s already Britain’s foremost investor in battery technologies, a Britishvolt spokesman said. “Although there are many challenges ahead, its aim is to establish the UK as the leading force in battery technology” the spokesman told The Manufacturer. “Britishvolt is working with partners, investors and suppliers to achieve this because it’s of paramount importance for the future of the UK automotive industry and the overall economic and industrial health of the UK.”