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Livent to supply GM

Livent has signed a sourcing agreement, under which it will supply General Motors (GM) with battery-grade lithium hydroxide for six years from 2025. GM intends to use this in its battery cathodes, which will power electric vehicles such as the recently revealed Chevrolet Blazer EV (pictured), Chevrolet Silverado EV, GMC Hummer EV and Cadillac Lyriq.

Johnson Matthey to exit battery materials

Following a detailed review, Johnson Matthey has concluded that the potential returns from its Battery Materials business “will not be adequate to justify further investment”. It will therefore seek to sell all or parts of the business.

Although demand has been growing strongly, the company said, “so is competition from alternative technologies and other manufacturers” and the market is becoming commoditised. JM had explored partnerships in the field but found that “our capital intensity is too high compared with other more established large-scale, low-cost producers”.

Two lithium deals for Umicore

Umicore has signed separate five-year, renewable lithium supply agreements with two companies, Ganfeng Lithium of Jiangxi, China, and Vulcan Energy Resources of Karlsruhe, Germany. Both are integral to its cathode business and to its own environmental commitment.

The agreement with Ganfeng Lithium will come into effect in 2022 and will cover a significant part of Umicore’s future lithium requirements in Asia. The lithium is mined from hard-rock deposits in Australia under strict sustainability standards.

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