Back in January, hydrogen fuel cell technology company Plug Power (PLUG 10.20%) announced its intention to launch a joint venture (JV) with French automaker Renault (RNSDF 4.27%). Today the companies made good on their plans, moving Plug Power stock about 5% higher as of 10:45 a.m. EDT.
The new JV, called HYVIA, will operate from four sites in France. In a joint statement, the companies said HYVIA "intends to contribute to the decarbonization of mobility in Europe positioning France as industrial, commercial and technology leader." HYVIA will produce fuel cell-powered light commercial vehicles, build hydrogen charging stations, and supply green hydrogen. It will also manage and maintain the fleets.
The intent of the venture is to broaden the concept of low-carbon mobility. The name HYVIA is a combination of "HY" for hydrogen and the Latin word via for road. Renault executive David Holderbach was named as the HYVIA CEO. He said in a statement that the aim is to capture at least 30% of the European market for fuel-cell-powered light commercial vehicles by 2030.
The companies expect the first fuel cell vehicles will be available in Europe by the end of this year, as will charging stations and the supply of green hydrogen. The initial models based on Renault's platform will be a van, a chassis cab version for larger cargo volumes, and a city bus model.
Plug Power hopes this launch will set up a model to eventually grow the use of green hydrogen for transportation globally.