COVENTRY City Council is set to discuss a £500,000 loan to help the new UK Battery Industrialisation Centre (UKBIC) take on new business as it responds to an upsurge in demand for its services.
As the pandemic eases, the demand for vehicle electrification increases and the the worldwide pandemic eases and demand for vehicle electrification increases.
The £130million battery research centre, opened in July 2021 to support the UK automotive industry develop the next generation of electric vehicle batteries, is next to Coventry Airport – the proposed site for the Coventry and Warwickshire Gigafactory.
Councillors will hear that since planning for the UKBIC first began four years ago, the automotive industry has changed more quickly than expected, with legislation now in force which will see the sale of new internal combustion engine vehicles banned by 2030.
As the facility is now complete and the effects of the pandemic are easing new orders are coming in and the demand is so strong that the centre needs short-term funding bring in the extra staff needed to service this demand.
Coun Richard Brown, Cabinet Member for Finance, added: “The loan makes good business sense – for the centre and for the council.
“It is a safe and secure way to give the new facility the early support it needs so it can keep our city at the heart of the motor industry as it enters this new and exciting era.”
Funding is being made available by the UK Government’s Faraday Challenge, but as a shareholder, the city council is considering a secured loan of up to £500,000 to help towards the £2million required in the current financial year.