Demand Drivers

The market growth for graphite comes from lithium-ion batteries. Batteries represent the most significant demand driver for battery-grade (coated spherical or ‘CSPG’) graphite.

There are two types of CSPG graphite used in Li-ion batteries — synthetic (~USD$20,000* per tonne average selling price) and natural (~USD$8,000-$11,000** per tonne average selling price). Due to cost and performance efficiencies, many battery manufacturers are transitioning to natural graphite.

Within the lithium-ion battery market itself, there are three main market segments.

  1. Transportation Batteries: to power electric vehicles; the electrification of automotive is evolving rapidly from niche to mainstream (significant forecasted growth)
  2. Stationary Storage Batteries: energy storage for electrical grid, commercial and residential buildings; also referred to grid-storage batteries (exponential forecasted growth)
  3. Consumer Electronics Batteries: smartphones, laptops, tablets, wearable electronics, power tools, and other battery-powered devices (moderate forecasted growth)

Transportation Batteries

All Applications in Energy Capacity by Region and Global Revenue (2013-2020)


Overall, battery sales into the transportation sector will grow from 18.5 GWh in 2015 to 40.3 GWh in 2020. Revenue will grown from USD$5.7 billion to USD$9.2 billion, reresenting a CAGR of 9.8% (source: Cairn Energy Research Advisors, 2015)

Stationary Batteries

All Applications in Energy Capacity by Region and Global Revenue (2013-2020)


Stationary storage battery sales will grow from 671 MWh in 2013 to 8.2 GWh in 2020. The 2015 to 2020 forecasted CAGR is 51.1%. Revenue will grow from USD$2.3 billion in 2013 to USD$4.8 billion in 2020. The forecasted CAGR for revenue growth between 2015 and 2020 is 12.4% (source: Cairn Energy Research Advisors, 2015)

All Battery Market Segments

Global Battery Forecast — Transportation, Stationary and Consumer Electronic Segments Combined (2013-2020)


The global battery market will nearly double in size from 47.7 GWh in 2013 to 96.6 GWh in 2020, representing a 5-year CAGR of 8.7% for the next 5 years (source: Cairn Energy Research Advisors, 2015)

Panasonic’s Forecast for Lithium-ion Battery Growth

Total Revenue (2014-2025)


(source: Benchmark Mineral Intelligence/Panasonic Corporation, 2015)


  * source: Industrial Minerals (October 2015)
** source: Benchmark Mineral Intelligence (September 2015)