Power Electronics

Joint Venture to Supply HEV Batteries

Saft, an advanced technology battery company, and Johnson Controls, a supplier of automotive components, have launched a joint venture to develop, produce and sell, on an exclusive basis, advanced technology batteries for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) and electric vehicles (EVs).

Saft has contributed licenses for its nickel metal hydride (NiMH) and lithium-ion (Li-ion) technologies, plus manufacturing know-how, for a 49% stake in a new company, Johnson Controls-Saft Advanced Power Solutions. Meanwhile, Johnson Controls has contributed licenses for its technologies, plus manufacturing know-how and will contribute $40 million in cash and assets, for a 51% stake. HEV and EV batteries for military applications will remain outside the scope of the joint venture.

The board and the management of the new company are comprised of executives from both partners. The two partners will contribute development resources within existing locations, and plan to develop state-of-the-art manufacturing sites based on market demand. The two partners also are combining their sales and marketing resources to address this fast-growing market. A NiMH development center will be established within Saft’s facility in Nersac, Angoulême, France, and operated by current Saft personnel resources.

John Searle, Saft CEO, said, “This is an important strategic development for Saft, and in conjunction with our partner Johnson Controls, the joint venture has real potential to reach its objective of being the leading Western manufacturer of advanced batteries for HEV and EV applications.”

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