Proper supply of raw materials is vital to ensure the smooth running of a business.
Cobalt is one such material. It is used in lithium-ion batteries and is an essential component in the production of smart devices and electric vehicles. As the demand for electric vehicles is likely to increase in the near future, there are chances of a shortage of batteries and related components such as cobalt.
Foreseeing this situation, Apple has entered into talks with miners for long-term supplies of cobalt to ensure it has enough of the material in the event of any shortages. Apple is said to be looking to enter into contracts to secure several thousand metric tons of cobalt a year for five or more years. The talks are confidential, and there is no assurance that any deal may materialize.
Till now, Apple had left the business of purchasing materials to its battery manufacturers. However, now the company appears to be taking on a more active role. This is not the first time Apple has purchased an important resource. About nine years ago, Apple bought a significant portion of the world’s NAND Flash supply, thus gaining a considerable advantage over its competitors.
Apple does not appear to be the only one looking to secure long-term deals to gain ample supplies of cobalt. Car manufacturers like Volkswagen and BMW are also said to be looking at deals to ensure an adequate supply of the material for the production of electric vehicles.