Hyster-Yale Materials Handling, Inc. recently announced that its operating company, NACCO Materials Handling Group, Inc. has acquired Nuvera Fuel Cells, Inc.Nuvera, located in Billerica, Massachusetts, is a development-stage technology and product development company focused on fuel cell stacks and related systems and supporting on-site hydrogen production and dispensing systems that can deliver clean energy solutions to customers.
Nuvera’s established reputation and leadership in fuel cell technology offers the Company the opportunity for direct access to fuel cells particularly suitable for lift truck applications, as well as the supporting fuel technologies that are applicable to its product lines.
Following the acquisition of Nuvera, the Company intends to commercialize Nuvera’s research and technology through the rapid integration of this fuel-cell technology across large parts of the Company’s lift truck product range. The Company expects to be able to offer its Hyster® and Yale® customers an integrated, factory-fitted fuel-cell solution as well as associated hydrogen generation and delivery capability. In addition, the Company will offer aftermarket solutions designed to fit most any electric powered lift truck brand in the market today. The Company will market these solutions in partnership with its leading independent distribution, national account sales teams and fleet management services to existing and new Hyster® and Yale® customers.
Over the past few years, the Company has been focused on increasing unit volume through market share gains by delivering lowest cost of ownership to its customers in a wide range of applications. In this context, the Company has been evaluating and investing in a broad range of alternative power sources for its lift trucks, The purchase of Nuvera is a strategic acquisition which is expected to provide a platform to expand the Company’s offering of best-in-class energy solutions to customers.
While Nuvera technologies have proven capabilities, commercialization of products that utilize these technologies remain in the development stage. As a result, Nuvera is expected to generate significant operating losses over the next two to three years before it can fully commercialize the technology and achieve breakeven results. The acquisition was completed for a modest purchase price with certain contingency payments that are expected to be paid to the selling shareholders based on future deployment of certain elements of the acquired technology. In addition, Hyster-Yale expects to expense up to $40 to 50 million over the next two to three years for additional research and development to commercialize the technology and reach break-even.
The Company believes it is the first major lift truck company to commit to the full deployment of fuel cell solutions for its customers. The acquisition of Nuvera creates a unique capability to integrate fuel cell with lift truck in a way which optimizes the performance and energy efficiency of the combined system, in conjunction with the ability to provide full life cycle maintenance, service and fueling requirements, to meet customers’ needs and offer a low overall cost of ownership alternative.