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Anglo American’s Venture Capital Spin Off Seeks Investors For Renewable Energy Projects

Anglo American’s Venture Capital Spin Off Seeks Investors For Renewable Energy Projects

LONDON, ENGLAND: AP Ventures is a venture capital fund manager that was initiated in July 2018 when Anglo American, the world’s largest platinum miner, contributed US$55 million in cash alongside six investments worth US$45 million and Public Investment Corporation contributed another US$100 million. Currently it is seeking investments to enter the fuel cell electric vehicles and renewable energy market due to the phasing out of fossil fuel usage by numerous countries as well as the rise in market demand. In particular, the company has a heightened interest in China as the country represents a large potential customer pool as well as a strong capability in reducing the cost of complex manufacturing through scale expansion. A benefit that is essential for the mass commercialisation of fuel cell vehicles. Furthermore, fuel cell vehicles have been highlighted as a key development area in Beijing’s “Made in China 2025” economic strategy and constitutes the nation’s new energy vehicles ambition. An ambition that has also spurred Chinese companies to enter the fuel cell vehicle industry through the acquisition of foreign technologies.

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China’s Largest Beverage Manufacturer Wahaha Aims To Set Up Smart Car Brand

China’s Largest Beverage Manufacturer Wahaha Aims To Set Up Smart Car Brand

CHINA: Hangzhou Wahaha Group has set up a car manufacturing subsidiary, Zhejiang Haha Technology Innovation Centre Co. Ltd., in order to enter the automotive industry. Although government approval is still required for formal business operations, the automotive offshoot is intending to develop intelligent vehicle technologies and smart cars using next-generation technologies as well as novel, environmentally and energy friendly materials. A move that is largely motivated by forecasts of increasing consumer demands and government incentives for electric vehicles and automotive technological advancements.

Previously, Chief Executive of Wahaha Group, Zong Qinghou, had pledged his deep interest in technology and invested over US$10m over a span of five years in an Isreali artificial intelligence centre focused on the development of camera lens in driver-less cars.

Other Chinese start ups entering the electric vehicles market include NIO, XPENG Motors as well as established household appliance manufacturers LeEco and GREE and real estate companies Baoneng, Evergrande and Wanda Group.

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Germans Already Going With Asian Batteries

Germans Already Going With Asian Batteries

Electric and hybrid vehicles are expected to account for 30 percent of the global auto market by 2030, according to metal consultants CRU, up from 4 percent of the 86 million vehicles sold last year.

Global automakers plan to invest at least $90 billion in electric cars and batteries, the most expensive component in the vehicles, to finance hundreds of new models over the next five years. For now, carmakers in Europe have been importing batteries from Asia, but as production ramps up that will become less viable. Setting up production in Europe would cut shipping costs by a quarter, consultancy P3 Group.

But some carmakers are not waiting for a European industry, instead signing contracts with Asian firms coming to the region. German’s BMW said it was not involved in the European alliance while Europe’s biggest automaker, Volkswagen, said it plans to get batteries from LG Chem’s Polish factory due to open this year. Mercedes maker Daimler has awarded a contract to CATL.

The European Commission’s plan calls for 110 million euros in battery related research, help for projects from a 2.7 billion euro EU innovation fund and the development of an EU “green battery” trademark. Supporters of the initiative argue Europe can carve out a niche by selling green batteries produced with renewable energy and ethically sourced raw materials.

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