Saubermacher is placing the expansion of its self-developed recycling process for lithium-ion batteries in the hands of the US circular economy specialist Redwood Materials Inc (“Redwood”). Redwood acquired 100 percent of the Saubermacher subsidiary Redux Recycling GmbH, the leading lithium-ion battery recycler in the EU, as of 14. September 2023. Saubermacher remains active in the area of lithium battery recycling with Redwood in a strategic partnership. The common goal is to sustainably close the loop on battery components.
While battery manufacturers for electric vehicles are ramping up production in Europe, it is now also necessary for recycling companies to create comprehensive capacities in order to be able to take a relevant market position. Global challenges such as climate change, the rapidly growing e-mobility sector and the desire for greater independence from raw material deposits outside Europe further underline the great importance of closed cycles in this area.
In order to meet this need and further expand its commitment to the European market, Redwood last week acquired 100 percent of the Saubermacher subsidiary Redux Recycling, based in Bremerhaven. The recycling process developed by Saubermacher and Redux represents a complementary addition to Redwood’s technology portfolio. For example, Redux already achieves recycling rates of up to 95 percent for metals. The so-called active mass also represents an important recycling product where critical raw materials such as nickel, cobalt and lithium can be recovered using redwood recycling processes, such as hydrometallurgical processes. Redwood is also taking over the entire Redux team, consisting of numerous technical experts such as chemists, materials scientists and metal lurgs.
“Only those who quickly reach a critical size can assume a leading role in the field of lithium-ion battery recycling in the long term. Saubermacher cannot make the significant investments required for this alone. With Redwood we have found the right partner to close the battery cycle sustainably for our customers,” said Ralf Mittermayr, CEO of Saubermacher AG.
In the future, the Austrian waste management expert will focus on all important services for the disposal and return of batteries according to the highest safety standards as well as on the sorting and recycling of classic household batteries. Circular management is ensured and further developed as part of a strategic partnership with Redwood. It was agreed not to disclose the purchase price.