EV Agency launched
Rise of the green economy inspires the launch UK’s first electric vehicle recruitment agency
The Government has placed significant importance on the green economy in supporting economic recovery post Covid-19. During the pandemic the Government has announced multi-billion investments for green start-ups, innovation in sustainability, a green jobs taskforce and industrial and residential decarbonisation programmes.
With the green economy high on the political agenda, a new breed of ‘greenpreneurs’ are emerging from the crisis of the last year.
One of those is Steve Doyle, who launched his Warwick-based firm in August this year and is not only a new entrant into the green economy but is also responsible for driving the green jobs market. Doyle is the Chief Executive and founder of EVera, (everarecruitment.com) the first and only dedicated recruitment consultancy for the battery and electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing sector. The company has recently been appointed by Britishvolt to undertake recruitment for its new Gigaplant, a specialist factory that make lithium-ion battery cells that will come on stream in 2023. Britishvolt has selected a site in northern England to build a £2.6 billion ($3.5 billion) plant in the port of Blyth. This will be built up in three stages, employing up to 3,000 people and producing at least 300,000 lithium-ion batteries a year by 2027. Britishvolt has applied for backing from a £1 billion British government fund set up to support the mass production of batteries and help the auto industry shift towards making electric vehicles (EVs)[i].
Britishvolt has also recently announced it will be locating its global headquarters in Coventry.
A former production engineer, Doyle is not your typical recruitment agent and he doesn’t want to be seen as such. “First and foremost, we are specialists in engineering and manufacturing, and we can talk on an authoritative level with clients as we understand their needs and we know the skills that will be critical for the EV battery cell production market.”
EVera is well placed for rapid growth having gained first mover advantage in what promises to be a major market sector in the future.
Says Doyle: “The demand for battery cells is growing at an exponential rate. It’s possible that COVID-19 has accelerated this, with more people reflecting on the importance of nature and of protecting our world.”
The figures speak for themselves. The steady increase in the move to electric vehicles has rapidly accelerated this year, with sales tripling in the UK – 76,000 have been sold so far in 2020. This contrasts sharply with an overall downturn in new UK car sales this year – October had the weakest new UK car sales for nine years.
The latest company to announce their move to EVs is luxury carmaker Bentley, who unveiled plans a couple of weeks ago to switch its model range to go fully electric by 2030, and only plug-in hybrid or battery electric cars from 2026.
Currently, approximately 10% of car registrations in the UK are hybrid or electric. The UK Government is predicting that by 2040, over 70% of vehicles sold across Europe will be electric, whilst the UK’s battery value chain is estimated to be worth £12 billion by 2025. In 2015, there were just five Gigaplants in the planning or construction stages globally – now there are more than 160.
There are currently four gigaplants in the planning stages in the UK, with Britishvolt at the front of the pack, aiming to have the country’s first battery gigaplant ready for production by 2023, making sure the UK is at the epicentre of global battery technologies.
Comments Doyle: “This means that we could quite comfortably be looking at 20,000 new jobs in the UK in the next five years, and up to 500,000 over the next 20 years.”
He adds: “Many of these will be jobs that no-one has ever done. Very few people in the UK will have worked in a Gigaplant before. But the good news is that many of the processes involved in the technology exist in parallel industries.
“For example, the lithium powder mixing and slurry processes at the start of the production process are very similar to those in food manufacturing, such as chocolate bars – so it’s almost like swapping the cocoa for lithium. The electrolyte filling stage is similar to putting vinegar or ketchup into individual sachets, and some of the deposition processes to make the cathodes and anodes are similar to those used in the print industry.”