EIT InnoEnergy powering the sustainable energy future in France

EIT InnoEnergy is powering the sustainable future of France’s battery market with two exciting initiatives: supporting French battery supplier, Verkor’s capital investment and launching the EBA250 Academy.

Verkor - high-performance battery cells and intelligent manufacturing

In less than a year after its launch, the French industrial company Verkor has announced that it has raised €100m in funding. Co-led by EQT Ventures and Renault Group, with participation from the French Government and Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Region, the funding will support the company’s expansion, and trigger the construction of the Verkor Innovation Centre (VIC) where the advanced battery cells and modules will be designed to support Europe’s net-zero goals.

EIT InnoEnergy, an innovation community supported by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union, are proud to be one the strategic partners participating in the round along with Groupe IDEC, Schneider Electric, Capgemini, Arkema, Tokai COBEX and the Fund for Ecologic Modernisation of Transport (FMET) managed by Demeter.

All 10 partners are united by the same vision: to build a competitive, sustainable, and local battery cell value chain in Europe. Verkor will deliver on this with a battery cell manufacturing capacity of 16 GWh in 2024, scaling to +50 GWh by 2030. The VIC, which will be located in Grenoble and operational in 2022, is a major milestone in achieving this vision. It will accommodate a pilot line for battery cell manufacturing, a R&D centre, testing facilities, module prototyping, and provide training for a new generation of engineers and technicians.

Introducing the EBA250 Academy in France

EIT InnoEnergy and France have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to launch the EBA250 Academy to reskill and upskill tens of thousands of workers in the French battery industry. As one of the leading actors under the European Commission’s European Battery Alliance (EBA), France – with three Gigafactories in the making and foreseen to operate in 2023 – has a growing need for specialised engineers and technicians. To fill this gap, EIT InnoEnergy, coordinating the industrial work under the EBA, will spearhead an education-sharing platform to dramatically reduce the costs of reskilling and upskilling.

EIT InnoEnergy is an innovation community supported by the European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT), a body of the European Union. The public-private partnership will address the emerging skills gap with approximately 800,000 qualified workers required in the European battery industry by 2025.

EIT InnoEnergy plans to urgently roll-out its training programme in France and throughout Europe to upskill personnel for technician, engineering and researcher positions. The courses have been designed by experts currently working in the battery sector and will cover a range of topics from electromobility, residential storage and grid storage, to recycling and data science. The modules will be delivered by local training organisations online, although some may require physical attendance at local training facilities, and any engineer or executives working in energy can apply.