Düsseldorf, Charlotte and Tokyo, 31 October 2023 – Asahi Kasei will invest in additional equipment for coating Hipore™ lithium-ion battery (LIB) separators. New coating lines will be installed at existing Asahi Kasei LIB separator facilities in the United States, Japan, and South Korea, with start-up scheduled in succession from the first half of fiscal year 2026. Through this investment the company establishes the capability to supply coated separators for batteries equivalent to 1.7 million electric vehicles.
Asahi Kasei supplies two types of Hipore™ wet-process LIB separators: a polyolefin microporous base film membrane and a coated membrane separator produced by applying ceramic and other coatings to the base film. As one of Asahi Kasei’s „10 Growth Gears“ (GG10) businesses identified to lead the next phase of growth in the company’s medium-term management plan for fiscal year 2024 with a theme „Be a Trailblazer,“ the separator business is a focus of proactive investment for capacity expansion to meet the significant increase in demand for electric vehicle applications.
Overview of the expansion
Investment: Approximately 40 billion1,2 (1 EUR = 158.80 Yen, approx. 252 million EUR, closing rate as of
Oct. 30, 2023, of the European Central Bank)
Locations: Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Hyuga, Miyazaki, Japan; Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi, South Korea3
Coating capacity: Approximately 700 million m2/year
Scheduled start-up: Successively from the first half of fiscal 2026
Regarding the investment, Hiroyoshi Matsuyama, Senior Executive Officer and President of the Environmental Solutions Strategic Business Unit at Asahi Kasei, mentioned: „Expanding Hipore™ operations globally to keep pace with the electric vehicle market is an important milestone for our separator business. We are happy to support the growth of our customers abroad, and with the help of our established global locations, we can do that quickly by investing in existing infrastructure and then expanding further with new greenfield sites as needed to meet regional demand.“
Asahi Kasei will continue investing to build its LIB separator supply infrastructure for automotive applications to meet growing demand, especially in North America where significant expansion of electric vehicle production is forecasted. The expansion announced today will raise Asahi Kasei’s coating capacity for LIB separators to approximately 1.2 billion m2/year, enabling the supply of coated separators for batteries equivalent to 1.7 million electric vehicles. This will contribute to building robust LIB supply chains in North America, Japan, and South Korea, with highly functional and durable wet-process separators for automotive applications. Asahi Kasei will continue to study proactive investments, including the establishment of new Hipore™ membrane manufacturing facilities to further enhance its supply infrastructure for the North American and Japanese markets.
1 Including certain new structures and expansion of ancillary equipment
2 The investment in Japan is certified by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
as a Project to Secure Rechargeable Battery Supply
3 Each within existing premises; Charlotte location within facilities of Celgard, LLC
About the Asahi Kasei Corporation
Asahi Kasei Corporation is a globally active diversified technology company with operations in the Material, Homes, and Health Care business sectors. The Material sector encompasses fibers & textiles, petrochemicals, performance polymers, performance materials, consumables, battery separators, and electronic devices. The Homes sector provides housing and construction materials to the Japanese market. The Health Care sector includes pharmaceuticals, medical devices, and acute critical care devices and systems. With more than 46,000 employees around the world, the Asahi Kasei Group serves customers in more than 100 countries and achieved sales of 20 billion euros (2.726 billion yen) in the fiscal year 2022 (April 1, 2022 – March 31, 2023).
Asahi Kasei is „Creating for Tomorrow“ with all operations sharing a common mission of contributing to life and living for people around the world. For more information, visit
www.asahi-kasei.eu, www.asahi-kasei.com and https://www.asahi-kasei.com/sustainability/
Asahi Kasei Europe GmbH
Phone: +49 (0)211 3399-2058
financial relations GmbH
61348 Bad Homburg
Phone: +49 (0) 6172 27159 12
Bildquelle: Asahi Kasei