UK gigafactory revived with sale of Britishvolt to Recharge Industries

Plans to establish a battery Gigafactory in Northumberland have recovered following Recharge Industries’ successful bid for ownership of Britishvolt, which went into administration in on January 17, 2023.


Owned by investment company Scale Facilitation, Geelong-based Recharge Industries is developing Australia’s first large-scale lithium-ion cell production facility and investing in research and development of next-generation solutions for current and emerging energy storage.

Under plans presented by Recharge Industries, the Britishvolt project will push forward the UK’s first Gigafactory in Cambois, Northumberland. According to Recharge Industries, Britishvolt will provide ‘thousands of green, skilled and local jobs’.

In a statement, David A. Collard, founder and CEO of Scale Facilitation said: “Our proposal combined our financial, commercial, technology and manufacturing capabilities, with a highly credible plan to put boots and equipment on the ground quickly.

“Our technology – including an exclusive license for the intellectual property and battery technology – has been developed and validated over the last decade through C4V in the US and will be the backbone of both gigafactories in Geelong and Cambois.

“Backed by our global supply chain, strategic delivery partners and a number of significant customer agreements in place, we’re confident of making the Cambois Gigafactory a success and growing it into an advanced green energy project.”

“We have the right plan in place, to match and support the region’s energy and ambition to become a major player in the international battery market.”

Britishvolt entered administration due to insufficient equity investment for the ongoing research it was undertaking and the development of its sites in the Midlands and North East England.

EY-Parthenon, Ernst & Young's global strategy consulting firm, were appointed joint administrators of Power by Britishvolt Limited.

“The sale of the business will help to support the development of technology and infrastructure needed for the UK’s energy transition,” EY said.

Scale Facilitation’s UK-based advisor, Edward Dawes OBE said “It is tremendous that we have been able to secure this advanced battery facility for the UK. Working with our closest allies, America and Australia, and using world-leading and proven technology, now we can take Britishvolt forward with real purpose.

Scale Facilitation and Recharge Industries have put in place a hugely talented and experienced team, who are looking forward to moving this project on at pace, aligned to strategically important regional, national and international supply chains. This is good for the UK, good for the employees who are in limbo and good for British consumers."

Commenting on today’s announcement, Michael Carter, head of automotive IP at law firm Gowling WLG, said: “The construction of UK gigafactories capable of providing a robust supply of battery technology is essential to the growth of EV development in this country, which presently relies heavily on technology developed in China, Korea and Japan.

“Although there are still significant hurdles that Recharge will need to overcome, the combination of Recharge and Britishvolt's IP allied with a well-located site, knowledgeable workforce and potential customers on their doorstep in the form of UK luxury and performance car makers, provide a solid foundation for success.”