Intelligent Energy and Suzuki Motor Corporation establish joint venture company to develop and manufacture fuel cell systems
Intelligent Energy and the Suzuki Motor Corporation have created a joint venture company called SMILE FC System Corporation to develop and manufacture air-cooled fuel cell systems for a range of industry sectors. The joint venture also includes a non-exclusive license agreement that gives Suzuki access to Intelligent Energy’s fuel cell technology for its next generation of fuel cell vehicles.
Under the terms of the contract, both companies will take a 50% stake in the joint venture. SMILE FC System Corporation will be led by Osamu Honda, Executive Vice President and representative director for Suzuki Motor Corporation, who will become President of the JV. SMILE FC System Corporation will be headquartered in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka, with operations initially based in Yokohama.
Suzuki Motor Corporation has been developing fuel cell vehicles with Intelligent Energy since 2006, and this successful relationship has led to the formation of SMILE FC System Corporation. I believe that we can accelerate the commercialization of fuel cell vehicles through this joint venture with Intelligent Energy.—Osamu Honda
The agreement enables Suzuki cost-effective access to Intelligent Energy’s advanced fuel cell technology through partnering and licensing, thereby avoiding the higher costs associated with in-house development. Intelligent Energy will benefit from Suzuki’s production expertise and the emerging Japanese supply chain to jointly develop the next generation of automotive standard air-cooled fuel cell systems.
This joint venture is the latest exciting development in the successful relationship between Intelligent Energy and Suzuki, which has previously resulted in the Crosscage motorcycle and the Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter. It is a big step towards the mass production of automotive fuel cell systems.—Phil Caldwell, newly appointed Board Member of SMILE FC System Corporation and Business Development Director at Intelligent Energy
Equipped with Intelligent Energy’s air-cooled fuel cells, the Crosscage and Burgman motorcycles were exhibited at the 2007 and 2009 Tokyo Motor Show, and in 2011, the Fuel Cell Burgman Scooter became the world’s first fuel cell vehicle to achieve European Union Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA). (Earlier post.)