With the electric battery, the Hauts-de-France are making their third industrial revolution

A new factory of electric batteries labeled “made in France” will see the light of day in the Nord department. The city of Dunkirk is the lucky one and the initiative goes to a young company from Grenoble.

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This start-up is called Verkor and it has chosen the Hauts-de-France region to launch its production of low-carbon batteries. It is the third plant of this type to set up in France, in the same region, in a context of strong European competition. The other sites are a Sino-Japanese one with Renault near Douai, and that of Stellantis – new name for PSA Peugeot Citroën – with TotalEnergies in Douvrin, still in the Nord department. Production is due to start next year.

The project speaks of the creation of 800 jobs for the first phase of the project, before quickly rising to 1,200 direct jobs, 3,000 indirect positions with subcontractors. In any case, this is what is written on the paper. All for an investment of 2.5 billion euros. The Grenoble start-up Verkor explains that it chose from 40 sites, including some in Italy and Spain, and it was Dunkirk that won thanks to the energy capacities of the 150-hectare site, access to labor qualified and close to customers.

The Hauts-de-France region has been engaged for nearly ten years in a process of developing new technologies intended to facilitate the establishment of factories on many industrial wastelands. This is the program called Rev3 – for third industrial revolution – and which is visibly bearing fruit. Rev3 deployed from 2013 by the regional chamber of commerce and industry and on which the American economist Jeremy Rifkin worked. Long-term work with the region, carried in particular by automobile manufacturers.

The northern Gigafactory, whose construction will start next year, must supply Renault in particular to equip the Alpine manufactured in Normandy. The first delivery of electric batteries produced in the North is scheduled for July 2005.

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