Lithium Technology Corporation ("LTC") (ticker symbol:LTHU), a global manufacturer of large format cylindrical Lithium-Ion cells and a global provider of power solutions for diverse applications, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to launch a joint venture with EnerSys, Inc. (NYSE:ENS) in Germany to produce large format lithium-ion based cells.
EnerSys will lead the joint venture in cooperation with GAIA Akkumulatorenwerke GmbH ("GAIA"), a unit of LTC. The joint venture will include LTC''s contribution of certain intellectual property, and its low volume lithium-ion cell manufacturing capability located in Nordhausen, Germany. LTC will continue to have full access to the Nordhausen facility, its production capability, employees and intellectual property. It is anticipated that the joint venture will commence operations and production on October 17, 2011.
LTC, through its GAIA subsidiary, and EnerSys have had a distribution agreement for the past three years. This joint venture will expand the relationship between the two companies, and it validates the quality and applicability of LTC''s technology for many vertical markets. A new company has been formed, EAS Germany GmbH, which will further the development and production of lithium-ion based solutions for space, naval, marine, renewable energy, and specialty high power applications for EnerSys. The JV will also continue to provide certain products to LTC for its customers in the transportation sector. LTC, through its ownership stake in EAS, will benefit from the market success of EnerSys'' global marketing and sales network.
Most LTC customers will continue to deal with LTC as before and see no change to their existing relationship with the company; however, they will benefit from the industrial expertise EnerSys brings to the joint venture. The joint venture allows LTC to focus its efforts on developing its capabilities in the passenger and heavy-duty transportation markets. The intellectual property license to EAS is limited to products manufactured within the Nordhausen facility.
"This joint venture presents several benefits to EnerSys," commented John Craig, chairman, president and chief executive officer of EnerSys. "It represents our fourth investment in advanced lithium based batteries to support our global customers and business. Additionally, we now have three focused plants in Germany producing advanced lithium, nickel and lead based solutions to provide our customers the best energy storage solution for their applications."
Fred Mulder, Chairman of LTC, explained "Our proven product and process technologies are widely respected by our customers, and this joint venture with EnerSys will allow for additional investment and marketing support for industrial markets worldwide. Apart from the joint venture with EnerSys, LTC will continue the development of our solutions for the transportation industry."