LG Chem Signs Massive Deal with World’s Largest Energy Storage Supply Company

On Wednesday LG Chem announced a battery supply deal with AES, the world’s largest Energy Storage Supply company.

According to the agreement, the largest of its kind, LG Chem would supply approximately one gigawatt-hour worth of lithium-ion batteries to the Virginia-based company. To put that figure into perspective, one GWh of batteries could power more than 90 million smartphones, or 100,000 households or 54,000 second-generation Chevrolet Volts.

According to the U.S. Department of energy, at 917 MWh,the battery capacity is greater than the total capacity of all energy storage systems now operating and including those which are being constructed.

The batteries however are not for cars, but for stationary energy storage units, but certainly the deal adds to LG Chem’s position as one of the world’s most influential battery companies.

“LG Chem has set a milestone with the latest supply deal for the gigawatt-class batteries,” said Lee Ung-beom, the head of LG Chem’s energy solution company.

Seoul-based LG Chem has been in the headlines recently, as it was announced in October that it would be the battery supplier for the upcoming Chevrolet Bolt EV. Chevy officials have stated that the Bolt, which is expected to go on sale by the end of 2016, will be able to travel 200 miles or more on a single charge. Whether or not LG Chem’s Holland, Mich. plant will be the source of production however has not been announced by GM.

The $303 million Holland plant, which opened in 2012, currently operates three battery lines that supply batteries for the 2016 Chevy Volt, along with the Chevy Spark EV and Cadillac ELR. A fourth line was scheduled to go online by the end of 2015.

Tesla Motors, which has stated goals for its own “Gigafactory” battery plant to open next year, announced in October an agreement with LG Chem that would have the Korean company provide batteries for existing Tesla Roadster battery upgrades. Rumors have suggested Tesla may wish to get batteries for other products from LG Chem in addition to existing agreements with Panasonic, but these have not been confirmed.

Beyond its agreement with AES, LG Chem has agreements in place with other energy companies around the world, to include Switzerland-based ABB, Japanese energy firm GPD, U.S.-based Duke Energy, and German firm STEAG.