Foxconn, Geely team up to build electric, autonomous and shared vehicles for automakers
The autonomous electric vehicles of the future could be made by Apple's main supplier Foxconn and the Chinese automaker Zhejiang Geely Holding Group.
The two companies have agreed to form a joint venture that will focus on contract manufacturing for automakers, specifically focusing on electrification, connectivity and autonomous driving technology, as well as vehicles for sharing. Each party will have a 50% stake in the new joint venture. The board of directors will consist of five members, with Foxconn appointing three, including the chairman, and Geely Holding appointing two, according to a statement from the two companies.
The agreement follows the efforts of both companies to take on a larger role in contract manufacturing for automakers. Earlier this week, Geely said it would help China's search giant Baidu start an electric vehicle manufacturing company. Baidu will provide intelligent driving technologies, while Geely will be responsible for the design and manufacture of cars. Meanwhile, Foxconn has announced plans to help troubled Chinese electric car startup Byton build its M-Byte SUV.
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Daniel Donghui Li, CEO of Geely Holding Group, said the global automotive industry is changing profoundly. Geely must "actively embrace change, build alliances and synergize resources to create more value for our users," he said, adding that Foxconn's expertise will provide critical insights for the transformation and development of the automotive industry.
The joint venture will provide advisory services to automakers and ridesharing agencies for entire vehicles, parts, intelligent propulsion systems and other automotive ecosystem platforms. Geely will bring its design, engineering, R&D, intelligent manufacturing, supply chain management and quality control experience to the automotive sector, while Foxconn will bring its manufacturing and information and communication technology (ICT) expertise.
The goal, according to the companies, is to help automakers accelerate the transition to new innovative and efficient manufacturing processes and business models based on connected, autonomous, shared and electrified technologies (known in the industry as CASE).
Dozens of new companies have popped up in the past few years aiming to become the next Tesla or commercialize autonomous vehicles. Foxconn-Geely now has a long list of potential customers. One of the major barriers to creating high volume vehicles is the billions of dollars it takes to build and equip a factory. These capital requirements have led a number of EV startups to become publicly traded companies by merging with a special purpose vehicle. Canoo, Fisker, Lordstown Motors, and Nikola Corp. are some who have teamed up with a SPAC also known as a blank check company.
Electric vehicle startup Canoo goes public on SPAC
Young-way Liu, chairman of the Foxconn Technology Group, described the alliance as a milestone in the cooperation between automotive and information and communication technology (ICT).
"With Foxconn's world-leading research and development technologies, intelligent manufacturing, and hardware and software integration capabilities, the two parties form a very complementary partnership that enables us to better serve and meet the diverse needs of different customers to offer the most advanced, fastest and most cost-effective cost - effective platform for the production of vehicles across the value chain, "said Young-way Liu, adding that the partnership will lead to enormous changes in the development of the automotive industry.
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