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Hyperdrive Innovation has been confirmed as a member of Eurobat – the trade association for European manufacturers of automotive, industrial and energy storage batteries – to strengthen its ties on the Continent.

Eurobat, which comprises more than 50 members from across the Continent, represents more than 90% of the European battery industry.

Robin Shaw, Hyperdrive Innovation Engineering Director, said the company opted for associate member status to give the innovative Sunderland firm, which designs and manufactures high-tech lithium-ion battery technology for automotive, off-highway and energy storage applications, a voice in Europe.

Eurobat members work with all stakeholders, such as battery users, governmental organisations and the media, to lobby government in the interests of the battery industry in Europe, and provide a unified voice for the sector when dealing with the drafting and implementation of legislation.

This includes environmental legislation such as REACH – the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals scheme – which aims to protect human health and the environment and allow for responsible trading of chemicals across the EU.

Hyperdrive was accepted as associate member of Eurobat at their AGM earlier this month. “We are now part of this network that allows us to influence policy on legislation,” Shaw said. “For example, we can influence European energy policy, as part of a unified voice for the battery industry.

“It is recognition of the progress we are making as a battery manufacturer and an opportunity to work more closely with established players in the battery sector.”

Long-term, it could mean developing new technology partners and distribution channels for Hyperdrive, Shaw said. “This is a step forward in terms of our interaction with other battery companies, and complements our existing relationships with automotive OEMs such as Nissan.”

“There are fresh opportunities in terms of collaboration thanks to being part of the association. We can also help some of those players enter new markets with our lithium-ion technology.”

Shaw said strengthening ties with Europe was important for Hyperdrive Innovation at this exciting phase in the company’s development, which has seen more than £3 million in fresh investment and trips to the JSAE trade show in Japan and Birmingham’s Automechanika exhibition over the past quarter.

Hyperdrive now has the opportunity to be involved in Eurobat working groups, and to inform policy that affects the battery industry. It also has access to the output of those working groups, including cutting-edge battery industry research and lobbying materials, such as position reports and analyses. “We wouldn’t necessarily get access to these materials normally,” Shaw explained.

Membership of Eurobat was paying off already, he added. “We’ve made some interesting contacts with potential customers and suppliers this month.”