(Reuters) – Ford Motor Co said on Monday it signed a long-term deal with Nemaska Lithium for the supply of lithium products, including lithium hydroxide, as the automaker ramps up electric vehicle (EV) production to 2 million units by the end of 2026.
Shares of the company, which is holding a “Capital markets” event later in the day, edged up about 1% before the bell.
The deal with the Canadian lithium company comes as North American automakers race to secure supplies of battery materials to boost EV output and catch up with market leader Tesla Inc amid surging demand for environment-friendly vehicles.
Earlier this year, Ford joined PT Vale Indonesia and China’s Zhejiang Huayou Cobalt’s as their new partner in a $4.5 billion nickel processing plant in Indonesia.
The deal announced on Monday will strengthen “Ford’s sourcing to produce two million EVs by the end of 2026 – and beyond,” at a time when doubts linger on Wall Street about the automaker’s ability to hit that target.
Ford reaffirmed its full-year guidance of $9 billion to $11 billion of adjusted earnings before interest and taxes and about $6 billion in adjusted free cash flow.
The automaker continues to expect its electric vehicle unit to lose $3 billion this year.
Nemaska Lithium is equally owned by Investissement Québec, the economic development agency of the Québec government, and Livent.
(Reporting by Abhijith Ganapavaram in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)