The Canadian company Li-Cycle to open a lithium-ion battery recycling site in the Hauts-de-France region
Li-Cycle is one of the leaders in the lithium-ion battery recycling industry in North America. The company is expanding its activities in Europe and is now making official its decision to invest in the Hauts-de-France region. The region was chosen to host the company’s first French “Spoke”, a pre-treatment site for recycling lithium-ion batteries. For the region, this strategic new facility will allow for the creation of around 30 jobs in the initial phase and will reinforce the REV3 dynamic undertaken by the Region and the Hauts-de-France Chamber of Commerce and Industry for the promotion of a sustainable economy.
Li-Cycle, an exceptional technology for sustainable development
The exponential development of batteries has created a paradoxical situation. Batteries are an essential part of the energy transition, the key to achieving a significant reduction in CO2 emissions into the atmosphere. However, their manufacture requires many critical raw materials, such as lithium, cobalt and nickel.
This is the problem that Li-Cycle intends to solve. With its patented and proven commercial technologies, the company recycles all types of lithium-ion batteries with a raw material recovery rate of up to 95%. The quality materials that are recovered from the batteries and their manufacturing waste are then fed back into the supply chain.
Li-Cycle is addressing the growing demand for critical raw materials for battery manufacturing by offering a closed-loop solution.
First facilities in North America before European deployment
Li-Cycle’s development is just like the battery craze: intense!
Its first Spoke (an industrial unit for extracting “black mass,” an intermediate product that contains high-value raw materials), based in Ontario, began operations in 2020. Currently, the Canadian company has four Spokes in North America.
Li-Cycle is continuing to grow rapidly in Europe with the deployment of Spokes in Germany and Norway, which are scheduled to go live in 2023 and 2024 respectively. In order to be as close as possible to its strategic markets, the group has chosen France for its third pre-processing center.
“In line with our strategy, Li-Cycle is continuing to evolve at the same rate as our customers. As we move forward with the deployment of our highly replicable and proven Spoke & Hub model in the European market, our Spoke in France will allow us to better position ourselves to support the accelerated market growth in the country. “
Tim Johnston, Executive chairman and co-founder of Li-Cycle
A facility in the heart of the European GigaValley
Li-Cycle has chosen to set up its French facility in the Hauts-de-France region, in the heart of France’s leading automotive region, near the largest concentration of gigafactories in Europe, in Harnes, within the Lens-Liévin Urban Community. In addition to excellent infrastructures and connectivity with the main hubs of economic activity, the Lens-Liévin area offers a recruitment capacity that matches the profiles the company is looking for.
This new Spoke will have an initial processing capacity of 10,000 tons of lithium-ion battery materials per year. This capacity could reach up to 25,000 tons depending on the possibilities for site expansion. The facility will benefit from a “3rd generation” technology that will allow it to process entire electric vehicle and storage batteries without manual disassembly, in order to improve safety and efficiency.
Fully committed to reducing environmental impact, the site will have access to renewable energy and will not produce any industrial wastewater discharges. Operational in 2024, it will bring Li-Cycle’s future capacity to over 100,000 tons of lithium-ion batteries per year across its global network of processing centers.
“The Hauts-de-France region is proud to have been chosen by Li-Cycle for its first Spoke facility in France. This new facility is very good news for our region. Firstly because it will create jobs, but above all because it represents a new stage in the battery valley that we are building in Hauts-de-France. “
Mr. Xavier Bertrand, President of the Hauts-de-France Region
A project supported by the Invest in Hauts-de-France Network
Li-Cycle’s development project in France has been receiving support from Nord France Invest (NFI), the economic development agency of the Hauts-de-France region, since November 2021. After visiting several sites, the company quickly selected an existing building in Harnes. The Lens Liévin Urban Community and NFI have been working closely together to support the group.
“Li-Cycle is about industry and internationally recognized research. It is also a socially responsible project with a team that is truly committed to the environmental transition. We share these values. They are perfectly in line with our ideas and actions. “
Mr. Sylvain Robert, President of the Lens Liévin Urban Community
“This project, which will create jobs, further strengthens the specialization of our business park in the circular economy and confirms the willingness of our municipality and our territory to decisively contribute to the indispensable energy transition and ecomobility processes. “
Mr Philippe Duquesnoy, Mayor of Harnes
Li-Cycle is a Canadian company founded in 2016 by Ajay Kochhar and Tim Johnston, which was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 2021. Its mission is to leverage its innovative Spoke & Hub Technologies™ to provide an end-of-life solution for lithium-ion batteries, while creating a supply of quality secondary raw materials for batteries.
Spokes are lithium-ion battery recycling sites. They use a patented, environmentally friendly technology to recycle end-of-life batteries and their manufacturing waste. Entire electric vehicle and storage batteries can be processed there, without being discharged or dismantled, by a submerged shredding process.
Hubs are hydrometallurgical processing centers. They will process the Spokes’ black mass to produce materials, including lithium, nickel and cobalt, the quality of which in turn will allow for reuse in the production of lithium-ion batteries.
Looking to expand in France? Contact Nord France Invest and benefit from free, confidential support for your project.
Let's talk about your project
Our location experts are here to help you set up your business in our region.Contact us