JOINT VENTURE VOLVO AND DAIMLER FOR PRODUCTION FUEL CELLS
Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group, have signed a preliminary non-binding agreement to establish a new joint venture. The intention is to develop, produce and commercialize fuel cell systems for heavy-duty vehicle applications and other use cases. Daimler will consolidate all its current fuel cell activities in the joint venture. The Volvo Group will acquire 50% in the joint venture for the sum of approximately EUR 600 million on a cash and debt free basis.
The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG will be 50/50 partners in the joint venture, which will operate as an independent and autonomous entity. In the press release both companies emphasize that they will be competitors in all other areas of business. By joining forces they want to decrease development costs and accelerate the market introduction of fuel cell systems in products used for heavy-duty transport and demanding long-haul applications. In the context of the current economic downturn cooperation has become even more necessary in order to meet the Green Deal objectives within a feasible time-frame.
The common goal is to offer heavy-duty vehicles with fuel cells for demanding long-haul applications in series production in the second half of the decade. “This joint initiative with the Volvo Group is a milestone in bringing fuel cell powered trucks and buses onto our roads,” says Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management Daimler Truck AG and Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG. In addition, other automotive and non-automotive use cases are also part of the new joint venture’s scope.
To enable the joint venture, Daimler Trucks is bringing together all group-wide fuel cell activities in a new Daimler Truck fuel cell unit. Part of this bundling of activities is the allocation of the operations of “Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH” to Daimler Truck AG. The joint venture will include the operations in Nabern/Germany (currently headquarters of the Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH) with production facilities in Germany and Canada. “Electrification of road transport is a key element in delivering the Green Deal. Using hydrogen as a carrier of green electricity to power electric trucks in long-haul operations is one important part of the puzzle, and a complement to battery electric vehicles and renewable fuels. By forming this joint venture, we are clearly showing that we believe in hydrogen fuel cells for commercial vehicles,” says Martin Lundstedt, Volvo Group President and CEO.
The signed preliminary agreement is non-binding. A final agreement is expected by Q3 and closing before year-end 2020. All potential transactions are subject to examination and approval by the responsible competition authorities.