June 8th, 2022 | 14:13 CEST
Battery game-changers with relative strength: Mercedes-Benz, Altech Advanced Materials, Varta
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"[...] We know exactly what we are doing and are implementing what we consider to be a proven technology in an industrially applicable and scalable way. [...]" Uwe Ahrens, Director, Altech Advanced Materials AG
Mercedes-Benz: Luxury that pays off
Mercedes-Benz is the German premium manufacturer par excellence. The brand with the star still has a unique appeal. Meanwhile, the Swabians also have numerous electric bolides in their range. From sedans to SUVs - anyone who likes a star on the hood also has a wide choice of electric cars. In addition, Mercedes is far along in autonomous driving and has already equipped its S-Class with all kinds of bells and whistles. As a rule, these innovations are gradually arriving in the "smaller" vehicles toopppppppoiuuu5. So Mercedes-Benz will continue to score points with its technology for the foreseeable future.
As a result, Mercedes- Benz is also shortening the gap to rival Tesla among the technology-savvy target group. Analysts also see Mercedes-Benz on a good path. The role model could be luxury companies that score points with close customer loyalty and low price sensitivity. It is hoped that Mercedes could also transfer these concepts to the car business. Although problems with brake systems recently led to a recall that is expected to affect up to one million vehicles, this has not noticeably shaken the share price so far. It could indicate that the general sentiment around Mercedes-Benz is very positive, and sales in the wake of the recalls are quickly absorbed by the market. The share continues to have good prospects!
Altech Advanced Materials: Great things are on the horizon here
Investors are also celebrating the good outlook at German industrial company Altech Advanced Materials. CEO Uwe Ahrens wants to make batteries in e-cars cheaper, more durable and safer. The key is said to be an anode coated with aluminium oxide. "Lithium-ion batteries, according to today's standard, already lose part of their capacity during the first charging cycle. Specifically, we are talking about around 15%. The cause is the formation of a boundary layer in which the lithium is bound. We can reproduce this boundary layer with the help of a ceramic coating so that the effect typical of lithium-ion batteries is eliminated and the capacity that would otherwise be lost is retained," Ahrens said in an interview.
Altech is convinced that it can implement its process on an industrial scale and is currently building a pilot plant for this purpose in Schwarze Pumpe in Saxony. Business relationships already exist with representatives of German industry, such as SGL Carbon. CEO Ahrens is also a well-connected engineer in German industry. The share price has risen in recent months despite a challenging market environment. This relative strength can be an argument for investors, who should definitely keep the stock in mind. It is quite possible that Altech's technology will attract the interest of some industrial companies.
Varta: Where is the fantasy?
One of these companies could be Varta. The battery manufacturer is considered extremely innovative and is known for its good quality. Altech CEO Ahrens also has nothing but praise for Varta and emphasizes how the Company scores points on the market through its technological differentiation. Altech also wants to position itself in a similarly flexible way and cover various customer needs. The great e-car fantasy has now faded at Varta. The share has come down to earth. However, if Varta can also leverage its good reputation in the field of batteries for e-cars, new potential could emerge. So far, however, this does not seem to be the case.
In order to profit from new technology, investors should either focus on shares that bring this technology to customers with attractive margins or on stocks that promise unique selling points. Altech Advanced Materials could offer such unique selling points. Soon, the Company will be able to convince potential customers - but also interested parties - of its technology.
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