US firm Enovix to invest RM5.8bil in Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: Enovix Corp, a United States-based advanced silicon battery firm, is making a total investment of RM5.8bil over 15 years to establish a high-volume manufacturing facility in Malaysia.

The company’s investment plan was disclosed to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim during a meeting on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation or Apec summit in the United States.

In a joint statement, Malaysian Investment Development Authority (Mida) and Enovix said the first manufacturing line, amounting to RM315mil, is set to be developed in line with the announcement made in August 2023.

The manufacturing line, in collaboration between Enovix and YBS International Bhd, will be based in Penang.

Enovix chief operating officer Ajay Marathe noted that the decision to choose Malaysia for its first high-volume manufacturing facility was an easy one.

This is thanks to over three decades of close collaboration with Malaysian government authorities and successful management of numerous large factories.

“Malaysia’s deep pool of technical talent, business-friendly environment and close proximity to our vendors and our customers’ manufacturing facilities make it an ideal location for us to help develop the battery supply chain ecosystem and manufacture and scale our next-generation batteries,” he added.

The Investment, Trade and Industry Ministry sees the move by Enovix as a testament to Malaysia’s attractiveness as a preferred investment destination in South-East Asia for advanced technology companies.

Its minister Tengku Datuk Seri Zafrul Abdul Aziz believes Enovix’s investment promises significant local spillover impact, which includes the creation of substantial high-quality job opportunities for Malaysians, and the enhancement of the nation’s industrial landscape.

“Enovix’s establishment of its hi-tech battery technology facility in Malaysia is in perfect alignment with the missions of our New Industrial Master Plan 2030,” he added.

Meanwhile, Mida chief executive officer Datuk Wira Arham Abdul Rahman is pleased by Enovix’s dedication to Malaysia.

He acknowledged that its presence in the country will act as a catalyst for nurturing mutually advantageous partnerships with local stakeholders, especially in the battery technology industry.

“As Enovix lays down its foundations in Malaysia, we foresee its transformation into a key industry collaborator and contributor to our economic progress and development,” he noted.

He added that Enovix’s investment in Malaysia is testament to the company’s trust in the country’s capabilities and workforce, and fortifies Malaysia’s research and development ecosystem.

Enovix, listed on Nasdaq and headquartered in the United States, has a global presence with locations in India, South Korea and Malaysia.

The company’s cutting-edge battery technology finds applications in diverse sectors, including the Internet of Things, mobile, computing devices and vehicles.

Currently, Enovix Malaysia Sdn Bhd is in the process of installing machinery and is anticipated to commence full operations in 2024.

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