Plug Power Inc., a leader in providing clean, reliable energy solutions has entered into a definitive agreement with Axane, S.A., a subsidiary of Air Liquide S.A. to acquire the remaining 80 percent that it doesn't own of HyPulsion, its European joint venture, for $11.47 million in Plug Power common stock, subject to certain post-closing adjustments. The transaction is subject to the satisfaction of certain customary closing conditions and is expected to close no later than August 2015.
Plug Power and Air Liquide founded HyPulsion in 2012 to jump-start the hydrogen and fuel cell market in Europe. To date the company has achieved key milestones in product development, customer engagement and strong OEM relationships. The original agreement intended for Plug Power to ultimately assume control of HyPulsion, though this was accelerated given Plug Power's success in the North American market.
Both Plug Power and Air Liquide agree that Plug Power is the right entity to drive growth in commercializing the European hydrogen and fuel cell market. "Plug Power has displayed leadership in building an industry in North America, delivering record growth in revenue, bookings and shipments," said Xavier Pontone, Managing Director of Air Liquide. "We look forward to a continued partnership with Plug Power in the coming years."
Air Liquide remains a critical partner for Plug Power and its growth strategy within Europe. Air Liquide will support HyPulsion as a hydrogen supplier to Plug Power's material handling customers. Additionally, Air Liquide will retain its seat on Plug Power's board of directors, a position held since 2012.
"A larger stake for Plug Power in Europe follows in line with the strategic path we've established to grow to a $500 million revenue company," said Andy Marsh, CEO of Plug Power. "The appropriate sales and engineering staff are in place, and we will now move bullishly to broaden our presence in the European material handling market. I'd like to thank Air Liquide for its years of partnership and am pleased that our work together will continue as we develop the hydrogen economy in Europe."
Today, Plug Power primarily sells its products into material handling applications, an addressable market that doubles in size when including both North America and Europe. Plug Power has more than 7,000 fuel cell products deployed in North American material handling operations. These fuel cells have accumulated more than 100 million hours of operational time.