LG Chem looks for promising battery start-ups

LG Chem announced a new initiative - The Battery Challenge - in the form of an open innovation contest for start-ups with new battery technologies.

The South Korean company offers more than $1.9 million in funding to 8 selected start-up companies (applications are accepted until November 2) and the possibility to partner with LG Chem on joint technology development, access to commercialization opportunities, etc.

Main point of interest for LG Chem are four categories:

  • battery material
  • battery management and control
  • design, manufacturing and processing
  • recycle and regeneration
LG Chem revealed that its automotive battery business has exceeded 60 trillion won (approx. $ 53.263 billion) in order backlog by the end of the first half of 2018, which sounds like hundreds of GWh.

More info here: The Battery Challenge

From press release:

LG Chem, South Korea's leading manufacturer of advanced lithium-ion batteries, runs its first open innovation contest 'The Battery Challenge' to support start-ups specializing in new battery technology to strengthen its competitiveness in the industry.

LG Chem is accepting applications until November 2nd. The fields of application are separated into four categories: 'battery material', 'battery management and control', 'design, manufacturing and processing' and 'recycle and regeneration'. Start-ups can apply and receive detailed information through the official website. (https://batterychallenge.co/).

The company asks all participants to submit their technology descriptions and business plans, which will then be carefully analyzed and evaluated to pick the top eight. Applications are encouraged to focus on technology and innovation in the battery sector. The selected companies will then be invited to 'Demo Day' in Silicon Valley, USA, around February of next year to present their business plans.

The finalists will be selected through the holistic evaluation of each business plan and presentation, taking into account each start-up's feasibility and marketability in the sector. LG Chem provides an opportunity to receive more than $1.9M in funding through a formal partnership agreement and will also continue to grow related technologies through joint research projects.

Strengthening technological competitiveness through open innovation.

LG Chem's goal is to discover innovative technologies and enhance competitiveness through active open innovation.

In June of this year, the company hosted the 'Global Innovation Contest (GIC)' in an effort to promote technical cooperation between LG Chem and academia. Prominent universities and research institutes from around the world took part, particularly those working on innovative technologies in five promising business areas: energy, environment, functional materials, biotechnology and platform technology.

LG Chem's ongoing effort to innovate is one of the many reasons why the company is now a leader in the battery industry. LG Chem has achieved numerous milestones since entering new business fields such as automobile batteries, ESS batteries and small batteries.

The automotive battery business has secured global customers with its advanced technology and has exceeded 60 trillion won (approx. $ 53.263 billion) in order backlog by the end of the first half of 2018.

On top of winning the 'ees Award' two years in a row at one of the world's largest ESS exhibitions 'ees Europe', 2016 & 2017, LG Chem also took home America's Brad Roberts Award in 2017. This is awarded by the Energy Storage Association (ESA) to honor the largest contributors to the development of the North American ESS industry each year. LG Chem's ESS battery is widely recognized in the industry as a leading innovative technology.

In addition, LG Chem has recently achieved remarkable growth in various business fields such as IT, where the launch of low-cobalt batteries for notebook computers in the small-sized battery business proved to be a great success. The company has achieved outstanding results in the battery business thanks to its top-of-the-line battery technology.

LG Chem's battery manufacturing method 'Lamination & Stacking' technology stacks electrodes and separator layers. This method increases energy density by maximizing the internal space efficiency of electric vehicles, ESS, smart phones and so on. In March of this year, LG Chem received the LG Research & Development Prize for 'Free Form Battery,' which utilizes this technology to realize the maximum capacity in the limited space found inside a smartphone.

LG Chem plans to focus on R&D investment in the field of innovative batteries, which can far exceed the limits of conventional batteries, such as investment in high capacity electric cars, small batteries and high power ESS batteries with low cobalt content.

Furthermore, the company will continue to strengthen its R&D in various areas, such as innovative batteries, through the active search and support for inspiring start-ups with innovative battery technologies.