Sometimes it seems like we’re giving all of our attention to electric vehicles, and not enough to the advanced-battery industry, which is another major factor in transforming our state’s automotive economy.
That point was reinforced earlier this month by a Wall Street Journal interview with Ann Marie Sastry (left), president and chief executive of Sakti3 Inc., an Ann Arbor-based developer of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles.
Under the headline “The Power of Batteries,” Sastry pointed out that “global markets for battery technology in 2012 totaled about $12 billion; estimates are mostly for around $20 billion to $25 billion by 2016, if not greater. Those markets will be dominated in volume by automotive markets. It's clear that the emerging economies are making a bet on vehicle electrification.”
How does Sastry see Chinese competition? “If you look at battery technologies, clearly the U.S. is a great proving ground and hotbed of activity for startups like mine,” she said in the interview. “The reason is, we draw talent globally. So we've had people at my company from seven different countries.”