Itzehoe, January 18, 2024 – In the presence of political and business representatives, CustomCells CEO Dr. Dirk Abendroth opened the doors to the new company headquarters of the German battery pioneer in Itzehoe. An innovative research center will enable the global energy and mobility transition with customized battery cells. On the Energy Coast, premium battery cell technology is set to become a global benchmark, sustainably strengthening the region. The company emphasizes that this is a once-in-a-century opportunity.
“This day is of historical significance for us at CustomCells. Our new building in Itzehoe is more than just our corporate headquarters; it is our future laboratory,” says Dr. Dirk Abendroth, CEO of the CustomCells Group. “Research is fundamental to systematically reinforce and expand our own claim as a premium battery cell manufacturer. We want to continue investing in Germany and significantly increase our track record in patent applications.” Last year, this number was already in the double digits. Founded in 2012 as a spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute, the company is driving the global energy and mobility transition on the road, on water, and in the air with novel solutions and innovative battery cell technology.
The groundbreaking ceremony took place in the far north in November 2022, and as of now, the approximately 160 employees at the location can use the new corporate headquarters. The modern, four-story wooden building has been constructed in an especially resource-efficient manner. Schütt Holzbau, a reliable partner from the region, assisted in this. The location is entirely supplied with electricity from renewable sources, and electric vehicle charging stations are also available on the factory premises. With more than 10,000 square meters, the adaptable layout allows flexible new work concepts and space for meetings, dialog, and exchange.
Investments in the Itzehoe location are not finished for CustomCells, as Abendroth emphasizes in the presence of Claus Ruhe Madsen, Minister for Economic Affairs, Transport, Labor, Technology, and Tourism of the State of Schleswig-Holstein. A so-called extruder, a state-of-the-art machine for global battery production, has already been ordered and the next expansion stages are in planning. The company had announced during the laying of the foundation stone that the acquired property would be expanded by an additional 5,749 square meters over the next five years.
Research strengthens the Energy Coast
“Our research center strengthens the Energy Coast. Together with our neighbors at this location, we are establishing technological beacons – and sending a signal from the far north to literally power Germany as an industrial and economic location,” Abendroth continues. “With state-of-the-art battery cell technology, we have the key to a once-in-a-century opportunity in our hands. Because a sustainable energy transition is not possible without powerful batteries. However, without political support and a clear commitment to companies from the region, this will not succeed.”
Recently, the Federal Ministry of Research revealed plans to cut research funds for almost the entire application research on batteries for 2024 due to reductions in the Climate and Transformation Fund (KTF). “I think it is legitimate to demand that, alongside American, Chinese, and Swedish companies, domestic hidden champions be equally supported in Germany,” appeals the CustomCells CEO in his speech.
CustomCells commits to the Itzehoe location
CustomCells sees itself as a pioneer of modern battery technology. As a spin-off of the renowned Fraunhofer Institute, the company has the potential to enable the global energy and mobility transition. This also includes showing other companies and large corporations how to establish and bring to series production a manufacturing process for customized cells. Since its founding about twelve years ago, more than 2,000 projects have been completed for more than 500 clients. More than 620,000 meters of electrodes have been manufactured in Itzehoe alone.
In the past five years, CustomCells has tripled its revenue and consistently posted profits. Notable investors such as Porsche AG, VSquared Ventures, the World Fund, Primepulse, 468 Capital, the Abacon Family Office, and international technology investors have already invested more than 75 million euros in CustomCells. Porsche is not only an investor but also a customer, with whom a successful joint venture has been established. For Lilium, the battery pioneer is researching at the limits of what is technically feasible.
CustomCells is working on innovative battery cells that, through the booster process of prelithiation, increase energy and power density by more than ten times compared to conventional batteries. The company differentiates itself through the development and production of premium high-performance batteries for clients with the highest demands for battery technology.
On the path to becoming a global player in the battery industry
“The success of the mobility transition is closely linked to high-performance batteries. And to develop and produce these tailored to the respective client needs, we at CustomCells must grow even faster than before,” says Dirk Abendroth. “We have good chances of becoming a globally leading key company in the battery market. A market leader in the premium segment. That is an ambitious goal, but we pursue it with the same enthusiasm and consistency.” Itzehoe is the home for CustomCells – and will remain so. Dirk Abendroth sees the opening of the new building as another milestone on the way to the top.