Lead: Fight Fit or Fighting Fat?

Lead–acid has been the dominant battery chemistry for 160 years.  Nevertheless, in the past couple of decades, new technologies – especially lithium-ion – have gained market share and prominence, particularly in terms of performance and perception.  Does the old adage ‘necessity is the mother of invention’ mean that lead’s unassailable position for so many decades stifled development and that this ‘old tech’ is now getting left behind?  Did complacency cause the lead–acid battery industry to get fat on the profits, rather than fit for the fight ahead?  This presentation examines whether the rate of development in modernising lead–acid batteries can bridge the performance gap to lithium-ion, whether lead has any aces up its sleeve left to play, or if it’s trapped against the ropes just waiting for that knock-out punch.


Mr Farid Ahmed Principal Analyst Lead Markets, Wood Mackenzie Ltd, UK

Farid Ahmed has spent his entire career in the metals industry. After a period in production and technical roles, he transitioned into the commercial world of lead where he combined his specialist background with the wider business needs of a technical and commodity-based product.  In 2005, he founded a business consultancy focusing on the metals industry and on lead in particular. Farid joined Wood Mackenzie in 2105 as Principal Analyst Lead Markets.