CNH Industrial and Nikola announced that they will enter into a strategic and exclusive heavy-duty truck partnership regarding fuel-cell technology and Class 8 / Heavy Duty Trucks in North America and Europe, and get Nikola's zero-emission heavy-duty trucks into production.
CNH Industrial will take a $250 million strategic stake in Nikola as the lead Series D investor. Pre-money valuation was set at $3 billion. Nikola anticipates raising over $1 billion in the D round, granting approximately 25% ownership to new investors and business partners, including CNHI.
IVECO and FPT Industrial, the commercial vehicle and powertrain brands of CNH Industrial, respectively, will assist in engineering and manufacturing to industrialize Nikola’s fuel-cell and battery electric trucks. The Nikola One, a NAFTA-compliant Class 8 sleeper truck; the Nikola Two, a NAFTA-compliant Class 8 day-cab truck; and the Nikola Tre, a European compliant cab-over heavy-duty truck, are the models of focus.
Nikola will contribute technologies for a European JV with CNH Industrial that will include fuel-cell expertise, e-axles, inverters, independent suspension, onboard hydrogen fuel storage, over-the-air software update functionality, infotainment, vehicle controls, vehicle-to-station communication protocols, power electronics, and access to a hydrogen fueling network.
“The time has come to finally provide a zero-emission solution to the heavy-duty truck market. While other OEMs believe zero-emission solutions cannot happen in the timeframe regulators have mandated, Nikola, FPT Industrial and IVECO are proving that these timelines are not unreasonable,” said Trevor Milton, chief executive officer, Nikola Corporation. “Nikola has the technology but needs a partner with a European network to achieve it in a timely manner. With CNH Industrial’s investment and partnership, we can now bring zero-emission trucks to Europe. It is exciting to see IVECO taking the lead in providing zero-emission solutions in Europe through its partnership with Nikola. By bringing CNH Industrial on board, we now have access to manufacturing know-how, purchasing power, validated truck parts, plant engineering, and much more. Few will doubt our ability to commercialize a truck now.”
Also partnering with Nikola are Bosch and Hanwha. Bosch has been a partner for Nikola in the development of its heavy-duty vehicle fuel-cell system and battery technology; Hanwha is collaborating with Nikola to assist in obtaining clean energy for its hydrogen fueling network. Hanwha is Nikola's exclusive solar panel provider (Q CELLS). From prior funding rounds, the two strategic investors have each invested at least $100 million, totaling $230 million.
"I'm excited to finally share two of our strategic investors to date. Bosch can help us commercialize very complex vehicle components, and Hanwha can provide us with clean energy at hydrogen locations where possible. Everyone wins because together we're helping make zero emissions a reality. Rather than going at this alone like many startups do, my goal was to build the most powerful network of partners in the world, and I believe we have done a pretty good job at that with CNHI, Bosch, Hanwha and others," said Milton.
Nikola is in the process of building a renewable hydrogen ecosystem in the United States and Europe, targeting 100% being produced from renewable sources.