UK battery start-up Britishvolt is said to be close to going into administration as funding talks stall
British battery-storage company Britishvolt was set to go live as early as Monday as the company’s efforts to raise more capital stall, according to several reports.
The company had been developing a £3.8 billion “crater plant” in the north-east of England and was backed by companies including miner Glencore.
It had also received a £100m pledge from the British government, but that funding was only to be made available once the plant’s construction reached a certain milestone, which has not been achieved, according to Financial Times.
Britishvolt’s executives had been trying to unlock funding from the government and elsewhere as they tried to raise an additional 200 million pounds or sell the company outright, the reports said, citing unnamed sources.
They had been in advanced talks with potential buyers including Tata Motors, which owns Jaguar Land Rover.
Britishvolt’s plant in Blyth, Northumberland, was expected to create 3,000 jobs and was praised by then-prime minister Boris Johnson in January as potentially bringing “thousands of new highly skilled jobs to our industrialized communities”.
The company said in a statement that it was “aware of market speculation” and was “actively working on several potential scenarios that offer much-needed stability.”
There had been several delays to the start of production at the plant, the latest to mid-2025, which the company blamed on “difficult external economic headwinds, including rampant inflation and rising interest rates”.
Britishvolt had obtained letters of intent to produce batteries for the British car companies Aston Martin and Lotus, but had not generated any income.
The company was criticized for the unusual practice of building a factory and then finding customers, rather than ordering security companies before building a factory.
Labour’s shadow business secretary, Jonathan Reynolds, said the “disastrous news” from Britishvolt was the result of a Conservative government that has “drown the UK economy down for twelve years” and failed to support growing industries.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Policy said the government was “committed to ensuring the UK remains one of the best places in the world for car manufacturing as we move to electric vehicles, while ensuring taxpayers’ money is spent responsibly and provide the best value. “.
Sweden’s Northvolt battery project, which has been supported by the European Union, started production at the end of last year.