Accenture to build one of the world’s largest gigafactories in Australia

Recharge IndustriesTM is building a gigafactory in Geelong, Australia, with help from Accenture, expected to generate up to 30-gigawatt hours of storage capacity. © Recharge IndustriesTM 2023. Image credit: Accenture

Recharge Industries has chosen Accenture as its engineering partner to push through with the construction of one of the world’s largest gigafactories in Australia.

The large-scale lithium-ion battery cell production facility in Geelong, Victoria, will create up to 30-gigawatt hours (GWh) of storage capacity per year for the electric vehicles (EVs) and stationary energy storage industries when fully operational. Construction will commence in the second half of 2023 to produce 2 GWh of batteries per year by the second half of 2024 and 6 GWh by 2026. The factory will directly employ 1,500 to 2,000 people when activities reach full capacity.

Now that the project has entered the detailed engineering stage, Recharge Industries and Accenture are laying the groundwork for building the plant. The framework agreement between the two companies includes the following Accenture consulting and engineering services: advisory on facility layout, including utility planning and setup of the production lines; assistance with obtaining and shipping the necessary equipment; conducting of final tests of all line equipment; ongoing process and product engineering support to improve battery production.

With legally binding off-take contracts and funding in place, Recharge Industries has already acquired the production equipment for the first 2 GWh production line. Australia should receive the equipment around the end of May 2023.

To meet the aggressive timeline, Recharge Industries and Accenture will work closely with Charge CCCV (C4V), a technology partner of Recharge Industries. C4V offers proven Intellectual Property (IP), a qualified supply chain, blueprints, and technology concepts for battery manufacture, all of which help to speed up planning, engineering, and construction. Accenture will collaborate closely with Recharge Industries to adapt C4V’s intellectual property to the environment and requirements of the Geelong manufacturing plant.

“Establishing a sovereign manufacturing capability to produce state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery cell is critical to Australia’s renewable energy economy — meeting national demand, generating export income and securing supply chains. Our factory, which we are building with the assistance of Accenture’s engineering and capital projects expertise and underpinned by C4V’s IP and battery technology, will create thousands of jobs and attract large-scale investment from key players in Australia, the Indo-Pacific region, and other parts of the world,” Recharge Industries CEO Rob Fitzpatrick said.

Soeren Schrader, a managing director at Accenture’s digital engineering and manufacturing service, Industry X, said: “Companies, economies and nations must speed their energy transition, a task hampered by ongoing disruptions in the global supply chains. Recharge Industries’ advanced manufacturing facility in Geelong will go a long way in helping the Australian industry tackle these challenges. This project is a testament to our deep engineering and industry expertise.”

According to Accenture, following a thorough international tender process overseen by Phil King, Global Head of Real Estate and Development at Scale Facilitation®, Accenture will work closely with world-renowned engineering, procurement, and construction management firms to be formally announced in the coming weeks.