Cummins To Bolster Investment In Fuel Cell Technology
Cummins Inc. is continuing its investment in fuel cell technology by making an additional cash investment in Loop Energy.
The investment comes at a time when the novel coronavirus and its impacts on the national economy have prompted Cummins Inc. to withdraw its financial guidance for full year 2020 results that had not factored in the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
Loop Energy is based in Burnaby, British Columbia, and works with leading vehicle manufacturers to design and deliver carbon-free motive solutions using both electric and hydrogen fuel cell technologies. In September, Cummins made a cash investment in Loop Energy. In exchange, Loop Energy was to supply Cummins with range extender systems for incorporation into demonstration trucks.
Cummins’ most recent investment was made following Loop’s successful completion of milestone requirements established at the time of Cummins initial investment in September 2019.
During a conference call with investor analysts earlier this year, Tom Linebarger, Cummins Inc. chairman and chief executive officer, said Cummins’ first fully electric bus, manufactured with partner GILLIG, went into service in California late last year.
As laws like New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act or the federal Green New Deal are debated, passed and take effect, Linebarger said Cummins is trying to forge a market in the technologies that will provide transportation in the future. Some investments make more sense than others given the current economic slowdown in the global marketplace Cummins officials are dealing with. Linebarger said the company is investing heavily in projects with a short-term payoff.
“Loop Energy is focused on becoming the industry leader in fuel cell powered truck and bus engine systems, and this additional strategic investment significantly enhances our ability to execute on this plan,” said Ben Nyland, president and chief executive officer of Loop Energy. “Cummins subsequent investment is further validation of Loop’s game-changing fuel cell technology, commercialization momentum, and the growing recognition of the role hydrogen fuel cells will play in commercial transport applications.”
Money from the Cummins’ investment will be used to further accelerate Loop Energy’s product development activities, project deployments and growth plans as Loop Energy officials work to expand in medium and heavy-duty hydrogen fuel cell bus and trucking applications.
“We are pleased to partner with Loop Energy and further support its efforts to develop a zero-emission fuel cell range-extended powertrain,” said Thad Ewald, Cummins Inc. vice president of strategy and new power. “Cummins is committed to investing in an energy diverse future, including fuel cell electrification, to offer our customers the power of choice. This is our latest investment in clean, high-performing products with differentiated technologies that will help us deliver value to customers in key markets.”
Wayne Eckerle, Cummins vice president of global research and technology, has been appointed to Loop Energy’s Board of Directors, effective immediately.