Automotive supplier Eberspächer has entered the hydrogen and fuel cell technology market by acquiring the US company ViCTORi and will in future offer air supply components for fuel cell systems.
ViCTORi, which was completely taken over by Eberspächer on 2 July and operates on the market as VAIREX air systems, develops and produces air compressors for the cathode gas supply of fuel cells as well as the associated components.
The American company’s technology is used for fuel cells in stationary and mobile applications. The latter include forklifts, industrial trucks and range extenders in small delivery vehicles. In future, according to the new owner, these can also be used in trucks or buses with fuel cells.
“We are deliberately investing in a market of the future and want to grow purposefully with hydrogen and fuel cell technology,” says managing partner Martin Peters about the investment. The air compressor is “making it a key component for the performance of fuel cells and contributing significantly to the performance, packaging and durability of the overall system”.
ViCTORi is based in Boulder, Colorado, and was active in the US and Asian markets. The company hopes the acquisition will allow it to expand its global presence and “keep pace with the growth rate of the fuel cell industry”.
“Together we can quickly amplify our engineering and manufacturing capabilities, and introduce our planned new products much quicker than we could have done it by ourselves,” says Ski Milburn, CEO of VAIREX air systems. Milburn will remain in operational leadership with the current management team, according to Eberspächer. Nevertheless, the German supplier will provide the new president of VAIREX, Massimo Venturi.
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