“Everybody here wants to help each other. We solve problems rather than create them. That’s the spirit. Everyone wants it to succeed.”
“It has to be circular. The suppliers have to be sustainable and secure. And we have to supply 100% perfect quality for a very sophisticated end user market.”
“We can change the world a bit. You don’t often get the opportunity to do that or be in at the start of an industrial revolution, something completely new. But here we are.”
“Across our supply chain we want to work with like-minded companies committed to net zero goals and contributing back to society.”

“It has to work, and it has to be profitable.”

Sheila O’Brien

Head of Partnerships & Grants Delivery

Why did you join Altilium?

Although I have 20 years experience in general business management, business development and supply chain optimisation and procurement in a global petrochemical industry in corporate blue-chip, the thought of working in a green tech start up was something completely different to anything I had done before.

Joining Altilium I would in some small way be contributing positively to global net zero targets, and it seemed to me like an opportunity in a lifetime and not to be missed.

I felt/hoped I had a lot of transferable skills from my previous work experience/career which I could call on and would be able to directly contribute to shaping in some small part the 5th industrial revolution of decarbonising our energy sector by electrification and moving to net zero.

It’s an opportunity that doesn’t come round very often to be part of setting up a completely new energy infrastructure and a new approach to doing business in a joined up circular sustainable socially responsible supply chain.

How do you explain what you do to other people?

Quite simply as a high value specialist battery grade materials manufacturer which recover and recycles the critical minerals in a sustainable way from waste lithium ion batteries, reducing the need to mine for the minerals.

What’s the most challenging aspect of your role?

The most challenging bit is the most exciting part of the role – the fact the industry/sector is largely a ‘blank sheet of paper’ and we are creating a new industry with no road map; government bodies, industry, consumers are all working in a more joined up approach to create a sustainable circular supply chain.

It’s a completely new way of working and everyone is working together to create new eco systems which are profitable but work with the environment and with communities.

Everyone is learning together. Unfortunately the UK is lagging the rest of the world by a few years and some serious investment is required by the UK government in energy infrastructure such as grid storage, gigafactory manufacturing to support the car manufacturing industry (UK 2nd biggest market in Europe) battery charging stations, renewable energy supply to industry, tax breaks for EV car ownership to name but a few.

What makes you positive about the future?

The sense of urgency and commitment everywhere in industry and society that we will do this!

How do you charge your battery?

Weather permitting in Devon I find going for 5k run along the canal early morning when all is quiet in Tavy is a great way for me to heal and get myself back together. Eating out with family in friends in local restaurants also helps.