By Giulio Piovaccari
TURIN, Italy (Reuters) -Stellantis will lift its 2030 revenue target for its recycling and reconditioning unit after its revenue grew 25% so far this year, the automaker’s CEO said on Thursday, adding that the business would help make electric vehicles more affordable.
Rising prices and reduced availability of raw materials, as well as environmental costs to extract them, are pushing manufacturers and regulators to reuse and recycle more.
Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said volatility in raw materials prices made electric vehicles (EV) less affordable for consumers.
“We aim to set up a stable flow of supplies for raw materials … avoiding market ups and downs. This means less inflation,” Tavares said in Turin as he inaugurated the automaker’s first hub for its recycling and reconditioning business, now part of its ‘circular economy’ unit.
“Raw material inflation is a problem in electrification progression,” he added.
As part of its long-term business plan, the Franco-Italian group has said it aims to generate 2 billion euros ($2.2 billion) in revenue by 2030 from its circular economy unit, by recycling and extending the life of parts, including EV batteries, and materials.
“The growth is strong,” Tavares said, adding the potential for the business would have to be revised up, although he did not provide details about the new target.
“What we are building here is a profitable business,” he said.
Located in the Mirafiori complex in Turin, the new circular economy hub focuses on life extension for parts and vehicles, component reconditioning as well as recycling materials to return to the manufacturing loop.
Stellantis initially plans to add three more facilities of this kind, “most probably” in North America, Latin America and in the Africa Middle East region, Tavares said
The Italian site, in which Stellantis has invested 40 million euros, currently has 170 highly-trained employees, set to rise to around 550 by 2025. Its employees mostly come from within Stellantis’ existing workforce in Italy, Tavares said.
($1 = 0.9168 euros)
(Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; editing by David Evans, Kirsten Donovan)