Li-ion Battery-Maker NorthVolt Aims to Build World’s Greenest Battery Cell

Highlights :

  • Northvolt intends to source 50 per cent of its raw materials from recycled batteries by 2030
  • The firm has secured close to $8 billion in equity and debt so far
Li-ion Battery-Maker NorthVolt Aims to Build World’s Greenest Battery Cell

Northvolt is a Sweden-based startup which develops sustainable lithium-ion batteries in conjunction with R&D, industrialisation, and recycling to support clean energy. The Li-ion battery maker was founded in 2016, with a mission to build the greenest battery in the world.

The firm provides electrification and renewable energy storage designed for lithium-ion battery plants to produce batteries for electric vehicles. Northvolt produces an environment-friendly battery manufactured with a minimal carbon footprint and with recycling technology.


Since 2017, the Stockholm-headquartered firm secured close to $8 billion in equity and debt, with the latest capital raise of $1.1 billion to finance its expansion of battery cell and cathode material production in Europe to support the rapidly expanding demand for batteries.

In 2018, Northvolt received a loan, a facility of up to EUR 52.5 million, from European Investment Bank (EIB). In 2019, Northvolt announced the agreement of a $1 billion equity capital raise to enable the establishment of the Northvolt Ett gigafactory. Further, in cooperation with the Volkswagen Group, the company also announced plans to establish a second gigafactory with an intended location in Lower Saxony, Germany.

In July 2020, Northvolt raised a $1.6 billion debt – provided by a consortium of commercial banks, pension funds and public financial institutions. In the same year, the firm raised $600 million to invest in capacity expansion, R&D and giga-scale recycling from a group of private investors led by Baillie Gifford, Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division, and Volkswagen AG.

The next funding came in June of 2021 as the company raised $2.75 billion in equity to deploy further battery cell capacity expanding the Swedish gigafactory to 60 GWh.

Key Customers & Growth

The firm set a remarkable milestone a year ago with the commissioning of the Northvolt Ett gigafactory in northern Sweden – the first cell ever to have been fully designed, developed and assembled at a gigafactory by a homegrown European battery company. The company made its first commercial deliveries of its battery cell in the spring of 2022.

The company has grown its presence owing to its considerable customer base and delivering its services to several big names in the industry. The company is developing manufacturing capacity to deliver on $55 billion in orders from key customers, including BMW, Fluence, Scania, Volvo Cars, Polestar, and Volkswagen Group.

The strategy that forms the USP for the company’s growth is the development of its in-house competencies and presence throughout the battery value chain, including cathode material production and recycling. Northvolt intends to source 50 per cent of its raw materials from recycled batteries by 2030.

Important Events

The company has achieved several important milestones as well. For instance, Northvolt partnered with a local energy provider Mälarenergi and commissioned its first public energy storage system in Sweden in November 2020.

Northvolt Labs

Scania invested in the partnership for the establishment of Northvolt’s demonstration line and research facility, Northvolt Labs. The construction of Northvolt Labs started in April 2018, the first step towards European large-scale battery cell manufacturing.


Building base for its recycling goals, Northvolt launched Revolt – a recycling program targeting 50 per cent recycled material in new cells – in December of 2019, with an ambition to establish a full-scale recycling plant at Northvolt Ett gigafactory in northern Sweden by 2022.

In November last year, Revolt produced its first battery cell with 100 per cent recycled nickel, manganese and cobalt. Northvolt now looks towards establishing a 125,000 ton/year Giga recycling plant.


In June 2020, Hydro and Northvolt established a joint venture, HydroVolt, to enable the recycling of battery materials and aluminium from the Norwegian market for electric vehicles. Hydrovolt commenced commercial recycling operations at its plant in Fredrikstad, Norway, in May this year.

Hydrovolt is one of Europe’s largest EV battery recycling plants, with a capacity to process 12,000 tons of battery packs on annual basis – sufficient to recycle the entirety of the Norwegian end-of-life battery market.


The JV Aurora was set up by Galp and Northvolt with a 50/50 stake. It will be located in Portugal and is engaged in the development of Europe’s largest and one of the most sustainable lithium conversion plants with an annual production capacity of up to 35,000 tons of lithium hydroxide and a start of commercial operations in 2026.

Partnerships & Investments

On the way, since its establishment, Northvolt underwent several partnerships.


In 2017, Northvolt partnered with several key players like ABB for technology cooperation, and Vestas for the development of a lithium-ion battery platform for Vestas power plants. The firm even partnered with Swedish municipalities aiming to establish Europe’s largest and most cutting-edge lithium-ion battery manufacturing.


In the year 2018, Northvolt and Scania jointly agreed to develop and commercialize battery cell technology for heavy commercial vehicles. In May, Northvolt partnered with Skellefteå to develop sustainable solutions for energy storage and district heating. Later that year, The BMW Group, Northvolt and Umicore formed a joint technology consortium to work together on the development of a complete and sustainable value chain for battery cells for EVs in Europe.


The year 2019 was a milestone for battery technology in Europe. The Volkswagen Group and other European partners joined forces to form the European Battery Union (EBU) for battery research throughout Europe. Volkswagen Group and Northvolt were to lead the new consortium.

In what the firm called its first commercial deployment, showcasing how batteries can be a part of the solution of the future grid, the firm partnered with Mälarenergi to establish a battery energy storage system at an electric vehicle charging station in Västerås, Sweden.


Northvolt and Vattenfall launched a battery energy storage solution, Voltpack Mobile System – a rugged, highly modular lithium-ion battery system envisioned as a zero-emission alternative to replace diesel generators. Strengthening its customer base, BMW Group signed a long-term supply agreement worth 2 billion euros for battery cells with Northvolt in July 2020. CAKE, the Swedish manufacturer of lightweight electric performance motorcycles, also went on board with, Northvolt to form a long-term partnership for the supply of sustainable battery cells for their line-up of electric motorcycles.


Micro-mobility provider TIER entered a partnership with NorthVvolt for green batteries. In April 2021, Fluence collaborated with Northvolt to co-develop smart, sustainable battery technology for grid-scale energy storage. The plan also included the purchase of battery systems from Northvolt. By June, Volvo Car Group also joined in battery development and production. The JV would also establish a new gigafactory in Europe with a potential capacity of up to 50 GWh per year. Production is scheduled to start in 2026.

Northvolt also ventured into partnerships in the telecom industry as Polarium became the first company to offer energy storage for telecom networks built on Northvolt’s green battery cells. In October, Northvolt and Cinis Fertilizer signed an agreement for sodium sulfate salt to be recovered from battery manufacturing processes and repurposed for commercial use.


Northvolt recently entered into a partnership with Stora Enso to create sustainable batteries using lignin-based hard carbon produced with renewable wood from Nordic forests with an aim to develop the world’s first industrialized battery featuring anode sourced entirely from European raw materials, lowering both the carbon footprint and the cost.


Northvolt acquires U.S.-based battery technology company Cuberg in February 2021 and established a new advanced technology centre in Silicon Valley. In the same month, Northvolt decided to invest $200 million in a Greenfield factory project tooled for the assembly of cutting-edge, sustainable energy storage systems in Gdańsk, Poland.

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Junaid Shah

Junaid holds a Master of Engineering degree in Construction & Management. Being a civil engineering postgraduate and using his technical prowess, he has channeled his passion for writing in the environmental niche.