What is a Gigafactory and why do we need them here in the UK?

Axiom Personnel has worked in the industrial and manufacturing sectors for many years and yet ‘Gigafactory’ is a new term and one that we needed to do some research into.

A Gigafactory is a manufacturing facility that produces EV car batteries on a grand scale. The term was first used by Tesla when they announced the new Gigafactory in Nevada, Texas. The UK Government has identified Gigafactories as a critical element of the UK Automotive manufacturing industry and achieving net-zero targets by 2030.

In June this year, Tata (owners of Jaguar/Land Rover) announced it would be investing £40 billion into a UK Global Gigafactory, which would be manufacturing electric storage solutions for both the automotive and other industries. This will be the first of its type in the UK, it will provide thousands of jobs and support a growing number of industries around the UK.

As the UK phases out the production of any new fuel-based vehicles, we are going to need an enormous capacity for the production of batteries. The new facility will be commencing supplies from 2026 and will have the capacity to produce 20 cells per second with a total output of 40GW per year.

The UK is already manufacturing car batteries for electric vehicles with the company Hyperbat based in Oxfordshire, which has just won the contract to manufacture EV batteries for Lotus cars. The only other British EV battery factory Britishvolt went into administration in the early part of 2023.

Battery innovation and production are the new golden goose of the UK economy, but Gigafactories are seen as being essential for the survival of the whole of the UK automotive industry, which employs over 180,000 across the UK. There are current estimates that China has already over 100 Gigafactories in comparison to mainland Europe with only 6 and the UK now securing only 1

Many of the job roles at the Texas Gigafactory are still very similar to existing manufacturing positions here in the UK, with job titles like Production Associate, Cell Recycling Operative, and Facilities Operator. Axiom Personnel has a continuous flow of candidates with skills in this industry and it is exciting to see new investment coming into the UK that will help sustain and grow the automotive industry.

If you are interested in finding out how we can help you keep your temporary and permanent positions filled, get in touch today.