BASF says it will establish a separate business entity for the company’s mobile emission catalysts, automotive catalyst recycling, and associated precious metal services under the name BASF Automotive Catalysts and Recycling. The carve-out process will start in January 2022 and is expected to take up to 18 months. Meanwhile, BASF says it will strengthen its focus on battery materials and recycling with planned investments worth €3.5–4.5 billion ($3.9–5.1 billion) between 2022 and 2030 in battery materials.
BASF Automotive Catalysts and Recycling will be a distinct legal entity, headquartered at Iselin, New Jersey, and will be led by Dirk Bremm as CEO, BASF says. It will continue to operate worldwide and comprise approximately 20 production sites and more than 4,000 employees, the company says. The new standalone structure will prepare the business for the inevitable decline in the internal combustion engine market and allow for future strategic options, BASF adds.
“BASF continuously evaluates its portfolio and with the carve-out we want to give this business more entrepreneurial freedom and agility, so it can focus even better on the needs of its markets and customers,” says Markus Kamieth, BASF board member/surface technologies.
The announced investments in battery materials are in line with the company’s increased focus on its e-mobility offerings and aim to support BASF’s long-term battery materials strategy, which lays out an “ambitious growth plan for battery materials and base metal services with targeted 2030 sales in excess of €7.0 billion,” the company says.
BASF’s strategic focus on battery materials follows the automotive industry’s transformative shift toward electromobility, the company says. Peter Schuhmacher, president/catalysts at BASF, says, “BASF will become a leader in innovative and sustainable cathode active materials with a significant production capacity footprint in Asia, Europe, and North America.”
BASF says that in 2021 it has made numerous strategic moves in battery materials including the formation of a joint venture, BASF Shanshan Battery Materials Co., with Ningbo Shanshan (Ningbo, China) to produce cathode active materials and their precursors in China; and a partnership with Contemporary Amperex Technology Co., Ltd. (CATL; Ningde, China) to develop a sustainable battery value chain.
By Sotirios Frantzanas
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