Daimler Becomes Sole Owner of Evonik and Li-Tec – Buys Out Deutsche ACCUmotive’s Stake

APR 4 2014 BY MARK KANE 3

Chemical company Evonik Industries withdraws from its Li-Tec and Deutsche ACCUmotive joint ventures with Daimler, selling its 50.1% share in Li-Tec and 10% share in Deutsche ACCUmotive to Daimler.

The German automaker will become sole owner of both companies, which are suppliers for battery electric smarts.

“Li-Tec Battery GmbH is based in Kamenz near Dresden. With approximately 380 employees, it develops, produces and distributes large lithium-ion battery cells. They are used in the current model of the smart fortwo electric drive. The electric version of the urban two-seater micro car was the market leader amongst all newly registered electric cars in Germany in 2013 with a market share of about 30 percent.”

“Deutsche ACCUmotive was established in April 2009 as a joint venture to secure the pioneering role of Daimler AG in the field of electric mobility. The company made Daimler one of the few automobile manufacturers to develop batteries for automotive applications and also to produce them in Germany starting in 2012. Deutsche ACCUmotive had approximately 230 employees as of December 31, 2013. The company’s headquarters and its research and development department are near Stuttgart in Kirchheim unter Teck/Nabern. Deutschen ACCUmotive’s production plant has been in Kamenz since 2010; a second production building went into operation there in July 2013.”

B-Class Electric Drive is Powered by Tesla

B-Class Electric Drive is Powered by Tesla

Restructuring is due to low sales a result of the changed market conditions.”

Originally, Daimler and Evonik were looking to sell off their joint venture, and expressed at the time that it might be worth as much as a billion dollars.

However the lone bid came in just a hair under that figure – at 1 Euro ($1.37 USD)from competitor LG Electronics…so that might have had something to do with the new plans announced this week.

Both parties agreed to not divulge the details of the agreement. Now, Daimler is a lithium-ion cell manufacturer and this makes it interesting because the new Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive does not use those cell, nor does the electric SLS supercar.  Those vehicles use Tesla/Panasonic or SK Energy, respectively

Thomas Hermann, Head of Corporate Development at Evonik Industries statedd:

“The agreement creates important opportunities for Germany as an industrial location in an international environment of intense competition for realizing electric mobility as the drive system of the future. In this way, Evonik and Daimler have found a good solution.”

Harald Kröger, Head of Development at Mercedes-Benz Cars Electrics/Electronics, explained:

“Along the value chain for drive-system batteries with lithium-ion technology, we now have the two most important components: the production of battery cells and the related development and production of highly complex drive-system batteries as a combination of cells and battery electronics. In this way, we secure not only expertise in electric mobility, but also the sites in Kamenz and Kirchheim/Teck.”

Categories: Mercedes, Smart

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3 Comments on "Daimler Becomes Sole Owner of Evonik and Li-Tec – Buys Out Deutsche ACCUmotive’s Stake"

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I guess they will keep producing LiTec cells just for the smart, because Tesla packs can’t get stacked enough in the tiny smart to deliver stunning performance.

But they will have to get manufactoring cheaper. Last thing I heard was 600€/kwh. Which would imply they sell the Smart ED Batteries (compared to price with battery leasing) with a loss. Or the real costs are hidden in the rest of the cars price.

If Daimler wanted to continue with the Li-Tec battery technology, it would have required more investment to increase production. If Evonik could not match the investment, the JV would be imbalanced and Evonik would not be able to properly look after their interests in the JV. It was probably better for them to get out, even at a loss since they are a key supplier of battery materials to Li-Tec. Now Daimler has the freedom to pursue their battery development with best in class materials, whether they come from Evonik or not.

Yeah, right, freedom. They were begging around to get help LG said 200M plus plus and that was too much for Daimler spread over EDs.

Daimler lost this round, let’s have a look what happens next.