Australian fast-charger maker Tritium Pty will accelerate plans to open a US manufacturing plant to meet booming demand in the world’s third-largest electric vehicle market and avoid supply chain bottlenecks.
The Brisbane-based group, whose customers include Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Siemens AG, seeks to avoid global shipping issues with the move, Chief Executive Officer Jane Hunter said in a Bloomberg Television interview. The new facility should also help the company meet its ambitious growth targets by maintaining market shares of 15% in the US and 20% in Europe.
“Because we manufacture in Australia we’ve seen significant issues with freight,” Hunter said. “That’s brought forward our plans to open a US-based factory, which we plan to do in the third quarter of next year.”
Tritium in May agreed to go public through a merger with blank-check company Decarbonization Plus Acquisition Corp. II in a deal that valued the company at $1.2 billion. The manufacturer plans to target growth in its core markets in the US, Europe and Australia, while also looking to expand in Asian countries including Thailand, Singapore and Japan. In China, where local players dominate, the company’s chargers were likely to be limited to 5-star hotels and car showrooms, Hunter said.
The company has sold more than 5,200 chargers globally and while the availability of specialised components has been a problem, it managed to get around a crunch in semi-conductors by securing a year’s worth before major shortages kicked in, according to Hunter. Tougher limits being imposed by President Joe Biden’s administration on automobile greenhouse gas emissions is expected to encourage more EV sales, and the need for chargers.
“Demand is outstripping supply,” Hunter said.