Weichai-Ballard JV Expected to Start Fuel-Cell Production in 2020
Ballard Power Systems (NASDAQ: BLDP; TSX: BLDP) today announced receipt of a purchase order from Weichai Ballard Hy-Energy Technologies Co., Ltd. (“Weichai-Ballard JV”) for Membrane Electrode Assemblies (MEAs) valued at $19.2 million, to be delivered in 2020 under a long-term MEA supply agreement.
Weichai Power Co., Ltd. is an investor in, and strategic partner with, Ballard. Under terms of a strategic collaboration between the companies that closed on November 13th, 2018, Weichai Power holds a 51% ownership position and Ballard holds a 49% ownership position in the Weichai-Ballard JV. The Weichai-Ballard JV production facility, located in Shandong Province, China, is expected to be commissioned and operational in the first half of 2020.
Once operational, the Weichai-Ballard JV production facility will begin the manufacture of next-generation LCS fuel cell stacks and LCS-based modules to power Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles (FCEVs) for the China market. The Weichai-Ballard JV is expected to have initial production capacity of 20,000 fuel cell stacks, or 10,000 modules, based on a two-shift operation.
Randy MacEwen, Ballard President and CEO said, “We have a simple shared vision with Weichai Power for our Weichai-Ballard JV – to create the leading fuel cell stack and module technology and manufacturing operation in China for buses, commercial trucks and forklifts. We are making measured progress on this vision. In 2019, together with Weichai, we staffed up the JV, co-developed fuel cell products for the China market, substantially completed construction of the JV manufacturing facility, progressed on our manufacturing equipment, processes and automation, initiated localization of the supply chain, and supported initial vehicle testing.”
The MEA purchase order announced today, together with a fully operational fuel cell module factory, are expected to enable large-scale manufacturing of fuel cell products by the Weichai-Ballard JV in 2020.
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