According to an Evonik executive, the company’s Li-Tec battery joint venture future with Daimler is now more uncertain, as the German automaker is seeking cost savings.
Klaus Engel, Evonik’s Chief Executive Officer said as far back as last year in October that slumping demand in electric cars and the increased model availability has put pressure on everyone, from carmaker to supply units like Li-Tec. He added that its company has decided to seek a buyer for its share in the venture, as extra risks and a cash infusion of millions would be needed to keep pace with the industry’s development.
“Evonik is unsettled because Daimler’s not sure how it will proceed while technology is improving,” said Evonik supervisory board member Michael Vassiliadis. “You’d have to ask Daimler what the future of Li-Tec is.”
While according to comments from a spokesman for the Stuttgart-based Daimler, the company is “convinced” of Li-Tec’s technological expertise, the German carmaker has been considering since last June its options for the venture, including a new partner.
Still, until now no solution seems to have come up, as according to a report back in December 2013 made by German Manager Magazin, the only interested bidder for Li-Tec was Korea’s LG Electronics – with the symbolic amount of 1 euro for the entire business.