Manz books order for lithium-ion laser welding pilot line

The fast-growing battery production market is proving fertile turf for Manz, with its latest booking coming from a U.S. Li-ion battery producer. While the initial order is for a pilot line, Manz has indicated that it sees “outstanding opportunities” for “significant follow-up orders… once the new process has been successfully qualified.”

The process that the tooling enables is the laser welding of Li-ion battery components. The order volume is in the Euro “six figure range.”

Manz CEO Dieter Manz has described the order as “trailblazing” and says that it opens up “immense opportunities for us in the e-mobility industry.”

“E-mobility is now clearly accelerating with significant revenue potential for Manz AG,” said Manz. “Accordingly, I am convinced that we will soon see sales in the triple-digit million range in our fastest growing segment, the Battery segment [of the company]." Manz’s other divisions are Display and Solar, with the latter having been the weakest performing of the three accounting for less than 5% of the company’s 2014 revenues.

Manz has not indicated whether the laser welding technology emanates from its recently acquired Italian business unit. In April 2014, Manz completed the acquisition of Kemet, in Bologna, Italy. Kemet, formerly Arcotronics, developed “winding technology” for Li-ion battery cells, which adds to Manz’s expertise in the stacking or electrodes.

The Manz release announcing this most recent sale also does not reveal which U.S. Li-ion manufacturer booked the laser welding pilot line, however there has been industry speculation that it is Tesla. In partnership with Panasonic, Tesla company is currently constructing its Li-ion battery “gigafab” in the state of Nevada.