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EV batteries

Korea’s EV battery trio among world’s top 5; seen gaining further ground

By Jan 04, 2021 (Gmt+09:00)

Korea’s EV battery trio among world’s top 5; seen gaining further ground

South Korea’s three major electric vehicle battery makers have grown significantly over the past year, securing spots on the world’s top five list, while their global peers have remained stagnant or lost ground.

According to market research firm SNE Research on Jan. 4, LG Energy Solution Ltd., a battery spin-off from LG Chem Ltd., ranked second with a global market share of 22.6% in terms of battery capacity in the January-November period of 2020. LG followed market leader Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. (CATL) of China, which controlled 24.2% of the market in the same period.

Japan’s Panasonic Corp. ranked third with a 19.2% market share, followed by Samsung SDI Co. (5.8%) and SK Innovation Co. (5.5%).

Data showed the Korean trio posted decent growth in battery supplies to their clients as electric car sales took off.

Graphics by Jerry Lee
Graphics by Jerry Lee

LG Energy Solution saw its EV battery supplies rise 142.7% in the first eleven months of 2020 from the year-earlier period. While Samsung SDI gained 72.4% over the same period, moving up a notch to grab fourth place, SK Innovation leapfrogged four rivals to attain fifth place with a 239% rise in supply growth.

By contrast, China’s CATL gained 3.1%, while Panasonic’s supplies fell 8.5%.

SHARES AT ALL-TIME HIGHS ON ROSY BUSINESS OUTLOOK

Korea’s EV battery trio among world’s top 5; seen gaining further ground
LG Energy Solution’s increased supplies were due to strong sales of Tesla Inc.’s Model 3, Renault's Zoe and Volkswagen's ID.3. Samsung SDI’s growth was boosted by Audi’s e-tron EV and Ford’s Kuga plug-in hybrid (PHEV). SK Innovation’s growth was led by Hyundai Motor’s Kona Electric and Kia Motors’ EV crossover Niro.

Global EV battery supply reached a combined capacity of 116.5 GWh in the first eleven months of 2020, up 15.3% from the year-earlier period.

Market analysts expect Korea’s three battery players to post robust earnings in March when they report the results of their fourth quarter of 2020.

Shares of the battery trio soared on the first trading day of 2021 given the bullish business outlook.

LG Chem finished up 7.9% to a record high of 889,000 won on Monday. Samsung SDI also closed at its all-time high of 671,000 won, up 6.9% from the previous session. SK Innovation climbed 22% to a 52-week high of 231,000 won.

Write to Man-Su Choe at bebop@hankyung.com

In-Soo Nam edited this article.

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