April 6, 2023: Battery industry veteran Mike Dunckley has joined Leoch to help spearhead the lead and lithium giant’s continued expansion in new and existing markets.
Dunckley (pictured), who was appointed EMEA president for Leoch as of April 1, told Batteries International he was looking forward to the challenge of helping strengthen Leoch’s global presence.
His appointment came just days after Leoch chairman and founder Dong Li announced the group planned to build a manufacturing plant in Mexico to ramp up its presence in the Americas.
“The challenge now is to build the Leoch brand, its identity and its role to take advantage of the opportunities in existing and future markets,” said Dunckley, who will be based in Europe.
Dunckley has been brought in as a result of his 30-plus years knowledge of the battery industry and his deep understanding of a wide range of technologies, having worked in various chemistries including lithium, redox flow and nickel-metal hydride.
He is one of the founding members of the Hawker Batteries Group and also one of the developers of the firm’s pure lead business.
Dunckley is also a former business development director for Fiamm.
For the past 14 years he has been running his Catalyst Solutions consultancy, focused on advising companies on technology selection, business strategy and development in the energy storage and electric mobility markets.
Now he will draw on his experience to help drive what he said will be the next phase of development of Leoch’s $2 billion international business, with an increasing reach into the Americas, Europe and Asia.
The China-centred company has its corporate HQ in Singapore and a US HQ in Los Angeles, with an extensive sales team across North America.
In May 2021, the company bought Madrid-based distribution business Meibat — from which it launched its Leoch Iberia subsidiary.
Dunckley said the Mexico announcement and earlier Spanish acquisition underline Leoch’s determination to become entrenched beyond mainland China.
“One of the things that really interested me about Leoch is they are one of the few incumbent battery manufacturers that have their own lithium operation.
“So having lithium iron phosphate in addition to pure lead and a full range of different technologies and the ability to serve all the markets — giving Leoch all the components needed as we drive the next stages of growth forward.”