Interview: Sunit Kapur

CEO at Epsilon Advanced Materials

Epsilon Solidifying EV Supply Chain with its Battery Solutions

July 08, 2024. By Aishwarya

As a global company, we are expanding our footprint in India, starting with a capacity of 30,000 tons and planning to increase it to 100,000 tons, reveals Sunit Kapur, CEO, Epsilon Advanced Materials in a roundtable interaction with Aishwarya Saxena, Energetica India.

Que: Can you give us an overview of Epsilon Advanced Materials' portfolio and the products you offer and how do they differentiate its products from competitors in the industry?

Ans: Epsilon Advanced Materials focuses on materials for battery cell manufacturing. We started in 2018 with a precursor for anode materials. We then formally integrated this to produce graphite anode material for battery cells. In addition to this, we acquired a company in Moosburg, Germany, for cathode-active materials, specifically lithium iron phosphate (LFP) technology, which is replacing NMC technology. We are now commercializing this in India.

Que: Kindly discuss any specific initiatives or strategies Epsilon has implemented to enhance its supply chain efficiency.

Ans: As a global company, we are expanding our footprint in India, starting with a capacity of 30,000 tons and planning to increase it to 100,000 tons. We are also investing in the US, particularly in North Carolina, where we will begin with 30,000 tons and aim to reach 60,000 tons. Additionally, we have announced a capacity in Finland for our European customers, starting with 30,000 tons and increasing to 60,000 tons.

Que: Can you discuss any specific strategies or initiatives EAMPL has implemented to enhance supply chain efficiency?

Ans: In India, we are highly integrated, especially with our parent company, Epsilon Carbon, from which we obtain our feedstock. We produce our own precursor, known as bulk meso-coke, for synthetic graphite. For natural graphite, we rely on third-party suppliers. In the US, initially, we will supply the precursor from India, but we also have the option to buy needle coke from a large US supplier. In Finland, the supply will come from the UK, and in the US, from Texas. All other processes will be localized in the country where we operate.

Que: What quality control measures does EAMPL employ to maintain high standards of its products?

Ans: We use a closed-loop process and implement numerous quality checks throughout and after production. We started with a pilot line and, as of March this year, have set up a customer qualification plant. The quality measures from our pilot line are being replicated in mass manufacturing to ensure consistent high standards.

Que: Sustainability has become a mantra that every business strives to achieve in today’s world. What specific steps has EAMPL taken to promote environmental sustainability in its operations?

Ans: Sustainability is central to our operations. In India, we generate our own power using waste gases from our manufacturing processes, creating a zero-discharge facility. This circular approach minimizes our carbon footprint, which is significantly lower than our Chinese competitors. We are also active in corporate social responsibility, having planted 17,000 trees and working with the local community in Vijayanagar to improve infrastructure. Our products contribute to sustainable energy by supporting battery electric vehicles.

Que: What impact has China's curb on graphite exports had on the global supply chain for battery materials?

Ans: The reliance on China for 97% of battery material processing has raised national security concerns. When China announced an export ban on high-grade materials in October last year, it highlighted the need for diversification. This situation has accelerated our efforts to establish a manufacturing footprint in other countries, including the US, where the Inflation Reduction Act has provided further motivation.

Que: Can you share any recent technological advancements Epsilon has achieved in the field of battery materials?

Ans: We are working on two significant milestones with cell manufacturers: fast charge capacity and longer range. Our products have demonstrated superior discharge capacity and fast charge capabilities, enabling us to meet these goals. These advancements are crucial for enhancing the performance of battery electric vehicles, allowing for quicker charging times and longer travel ranges.

Que: Any expansion plans or product launches we can expect this year for the Asia Pacific region?

Ans: We plan to start our cathode activities in India with a 10,000-ton plant and then expand globally. We recently acquired a facility in February and are currently working on its industrialization plan.

Please share! Email Buffer Digg Facebook Google LinkedIn Pinterest Reddit Twitter
If you want to cooperate with us and would like to reuse some of our content,
please contact:
Next events
Last interviews
Follow us