© SK Nexilis - for illustrative purposes General | February 04, 2021
SK Nexilis to build copper foil plant in Malaysia
South Korean SK Nexilis, a produces copper foil for electric vehicle battery manufacturer SKC, is planning its first overseas production base to be in KKIP Industrial Complex, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.
With proposed investments of approximately KRW 650 billion (EUR 484.6 million), the company looks to construct a copper foil manufacturing facility with an annual production capacity of 50'000 tonnes, according to a report from MIDA, the Malaysian Investment Development Authority. The facility’s construction is currently expected to start in the first half of 2021 and commercial operations to kickstart by 2023. Once up and running, the new facility will increase SK Nexilis’ copper foil production capacity by three times its current global capacity to about 100'000 tons. The company has already improved productivity by enhancing its fourth factory in Korea, which began its commercial operation this year, by introducing unmanned vehicles and robots. SK Nexilis is now looking to upgrade further, taking aim at factory number five and six as well. In its own press release the company states that it plans to install an automated facility, drawing from the experience of the operation of its fourth factory, as well as the upgraded fifth and sixth factories, SK Nexilis plans to utilise the know-how accumulated in them in Malaysia. The company aslo says it is considering follow-up investments in Malaysia, Europe, and the United States in order to cope with the rapidly growing markets. According to SNE Research, the EV market and the battery market are expected to grow by 41% and 38% on average, respectively, until 2025. The demand for copper foil is increasing and SK Nexilis is displaying a 100% operation rate. The company says it plans to expand its production capacity five-fold by 2025, through continued investment.