Geneva, Switzerland & Washington, D.C., United States [RenewableEnergyWorld.com] GE has announced that it is ramping up its efforts to promote electric transportation by investing in Norwegian electric car manufacturer Think, which unveiled a five-seat crossover concept car in Geneva this week. To power its vehicles, Think has signed a commercial supply agreement with lithium-ion battery manufacturer A123Systems. GE plans to to help both companies commercialize technology to make electric transportation practical and affordable.
The crossover TH!NK Ox is an electric five-seat car close to the size of a sport utility vehicle. Also in Geneva, the company launched the TH!NK City, a plug-in electric car with over 100 miles range. The commercial supply agreement with A123Systems provides Think with patented Nanophosphate lithium-ion batteries for the TH!NK City, now in production at the company’s factory in Norway. Think is delivering its first cars in Norway, with international sales to follow later in the year.
GE Energy Financial Services announced it has invested in A123Systems to help the company roll out batteries for Think. GE is now A123’s largest cash investor, having put more than US $20 million into the company. In addition, GE disclosed it has invested US $4 million in Think Global, the Norwegian holding company that makes the electric cars. The investments were made by GE Energy Financial Services’ recently expanded seven-member venture capital group – with offices in Stamford, CT, San Francisco, and Munich, Germany. That group has invested nearly US $100 million in 12 companies during the last 18 months.
“Our work with A123 and Think taps GE’s unique combination of venture capital, engineering, process and commercial expertise to help burgeoning, next generation technology companies bring their innovative products to market,” said Kevin Walsh, managing director and leader of renewable energy investing at GE Energy Financial Services.