Tesla battery partner LG Chem sees revenue doubling by 2025 as EVs gain ground

Tesla Gigafactory Nevada battery cell production line (Credit: Super Factories)

The electric vehicle market may be hitting some bumps this year due to the pandemic, but one of Tesla’s key battery suppliers, LG Chem, is optimistic nonetheless. In a recent interview at his office in Seoul, LG Chem Chief Executive Officer Hak Cheol Shin noted that he expects the company to double its revenue by 2025, thanks in no small part to the momentum of electric car makers like Tesla. 

As noted in a Bloomberg report, LG Chem’s revenue this year is expected to reach a record of 13 trillion won (about $11 billion). This is incredibly impressive, though the LG Chem CEO stated that the company’s revenue could hit 30 trillion won by 2025 (about $25 billion). Shin also noted that LG Chem has no issues when it comes to its supply chain, which should allow it to meet the demand of its customers. 

“We have no problem in our supply chain and can deliver all of the orders from customers this year despite the coronavirus,” he said. 

LG Chem sales have jumped 83% to 10.5 GWh, and part of this is due to Tesla’s ramp of the Made-in-China Model 3 in Gigafactory Shanghai. As noted by SNE Research, LG Chem’s partnership with Tesla, as well as the sales of the Renault Zoe, have helped the South Korean firm take the market lead over China-based Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd. (CATL). Interestingly enough, CATL also happens to be a partner of Tesla China. 

According to Hwang Kyu-Won, an analyst at Yuanta Securities Korea Co., LG Chem’s partnership with Tesla would likely contribute greatly to the South Korean firm’s revenue goals, thanks to the American electric car maker’s dominating lead in the EV market. That being said, even if new companies and legacy automakers catch up to Tesla, LG Chem could still see notable benefits to its business. 

“The point is how much LG will be able to get orders from Tesla, because everyone agrees Tesla will lead the electric-car market. However, if other automakers catch up with Tesla, that might be good news for LG Chem too, because of its diversified customers,” Hwang said. 

Considering that Tesla has only just started entering the mass market with the Model 3 and the Model Y, the company’s business with LG Chem would likely go on for quite a long time. This is evident in Tesla’s partnership with Panasonic, which has been ongoing since 2009. If LG Chem could keep Tesla as a partner, its business would likely benefit from the notable momentum currently gathering in the EV sector. 

As for the LG Chem CEO, he appears to believe that the global electric vehicle market still has a lot of growth yet. “The global electric vehicle industry itself is growing fast, but the penetration rate is about 3% now,” Shin said. 

Simon Alvarez: Simon is a reporter with a passion for electric cars and clean energy. Fascinated by the world envisioned by Elon Musk, he hopes to make it to Mars (at least as a tourist) someday.
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