European production in the heart of France.
Political and economic uncertainty adding to a complicated supply chain and long lead time – many business owners are now looking for alternative solutions. Putting all of one’s eggs in one basket (like outsourcing the biggest part of a production to low-wage countries) made many European corporations vulnerable. Exo Industry responded to this trend by acting differently and assembling battery solutions in the heart of France.
Independency and flexibility
It all started with Brexit. Then came Covid-19, and the market was battling to exist in an unusual and unpredictable period. Many businesses were going through difficult times and doing everything they could to get through it without losing too much money. We all saw quite quickly that the overarching idea of the global market being robust and unaffected was a huge illusion. At the same time, there were other businesses with a different viewpoint. The Swedish battery-giant CEBON Group, with a more then 35 years of expertise from the battery industry, didn´t want to play safe. That´s when EXO Industry came to live, with France as it´s hometown.
“Our French team was initiating the idea of placing a new company in France. The market is large and dynamic, with a high density of industries integrating batteries in their devices. And with an easy connection to other EMEA countries we can manage a lot of projects for different type of needs but with a shorter lead time for customers”, says Jérome Noris, General Manager of Industry at CEBON Group.
“Rather early we understood that the batteries may become a critical part of the energy chain. Therefore, we could no longer exclusively rely on countries located distant from Europe. The concept of an EU-made battery pack assembly has been widely embraced. With more flexibility, better quality, and more reactivity as the result. EXO Industry’s intention is to be a local partner for developing on-demand and managing a project in real-time, with possible questions and challenges that may come along the way”, Jérome continues.
Expectations and struggles
According to 2022 statistics, more than 60% of European and US manufacturing companies anticipated to onshore or reshore part of their Asia production in the next three years. With rising energy costs (which are having an influence on transportation and logistics), many companies are searching for additional methods to protect their production.
“EXO Industry was born in time of the pandemic. Which, honestly, doesn´t facilitate to the startup of a new company. It takes time to acquire good processes and reach production quality performance at the level of EU-client’s expectations. The team is now in the phase of implementing a Quality Management System, which will boost our client satisfaction even further. No good business can be built without the courage and patience of all participants”, Jérome tells.
Global electrification increases European demand
With the global automobile industry moving toward electrification in order to attain zero-emissions by 2050, there is a high demand for electric cars. Due to prior Covid-19 lockdowns and the current crisis in Ukraine, an increasing number of businesses are seeking alternative markets which offer reliability and stability.
“There is a strong incitation to relocate strategic industries within Europe and the last few years have demonstrated that this is even critical. Energy, and more specifically batteries, are part of strategic products which we can expect will increase even more in EU. Each country must determine how it will secure vital product supplies and what must be done to sustain production without relying on outside sources”, Jérome says.
So, how do you see the market develop in the next 3-5 years?
“I expect market demand will continue to rise by double digits each year. The primary drivers will be electric mobility, battery storage, and renewable energy. And there will undoubtedly be a high demand for the rapidly rising trend of industrial batteries. We have a fantastic opportunity here to significantly expand our expertise and potential for distributing our products throughout Europe. And, together with our partners, we have every opportunity to expand our presence in the EU energy market, with battery storage as our primary emphasis. Jérome concludes.
Top-4 recommendations to other companies
Perhaps the path ahead appears too lengthy. In certain European countries, moving from a vision to a manufacturing concept may appear impossible. To begin with, an organized strategy with finances, marketing analytics, data, and so on is required. And, according to Jérome at EXO Industry, there are four factors that contribute to the success of your business relocation:
- To not underestimate the time of implementation and the resources needed for success.
- Make sure your added values are understood and well conveyed to the market.
- Get the support of already existing clients. What are their needs? What kind of solutions do they seek that you could implement in your new business idea?
- Be resilient and trust your vision of the company.