Apple’s global head of battery development moves to Volkswagen

The Apple logo at an Apple store in Saint-Herblain near Nantes
A woman walks past the Apple logo in front of an Apple store in Saint-Herblain near Nantes, France, September 16, 2021. REUTERS / Stephane Mahe / Files

November 26, 2021

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Apple’s global chief of battery development, Ahn Soonho, has moved to Volkswagen to lead the automaker’s development of electric vehicle batteries, according to his Linkedin filing.

This is the second time in recent months that an Apple executive has left an automaker. Apple lost the head of the car project, Doug Field, to Ford Motor in September.

Ahn this month became chief technology officer at Volkswagen Group Components’ battery division, according to his Linkedin profile.

In 2018, Apple hired Ahn, a former executive at Samsung SDI’s next-generation battery division. Apple not only uses batteries in cell phones and laptops, but also electric vehicles under development.

Industry sources told Reuters last year that Apple is aiming to launch an electric car with advanced battery technology by 2024.

Apple declined to comment while Ahn and Volkswagen were not immediately available for comment.

When asked about whether Apple plans to develop batteries and displays in-house like it does for chips, Apple CEO Tim Cook said in October, “I wouldn’t want to rule anything out. “

“The question is, do we see our path clearly to do something materially better,” he said on a conference call.

Apple Inc’s talks with China’s CATL and BYD over their expected supply of electric vehicle batteries have mostly stalled after suppliers refused to build factories in the US that only serve services to the tech giant, three people with knowledge of the discussions told Reuters in September.

Volkswagen has outlined an ambitious plan to build six battery factories across Europe with partners by the end of the decade, key to its vision to overtake Tesla Inc as the leading company in the world. world leader in electric vehicles.

(Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Cynthia Osterman) Apple’s global head of battery development moves to Volkswagen

Caroline Bleakley

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