Although the price of Weichai Power fell away steadily in recent months, it has bounced back very strongly in recent weeks by more than 35 percent. Weichai, as a leading producer of diesel engines in China, is the perfect counterpart to the American corporation Cummins, which is very aggressively expanding its hydrogen and fuel cell activities, and as such is hedging Weichai’s future strategy. For Cummins, the acquisition of Canadian firm Hydrogenics was its ticket into the world of hydrogen. For Weichai, it was its stake in Ballard Power (probably currently standing at about 15 percent) and the joint production of commercial vehicle stacks in a joint venture (51:49).
The topic of hydrogen and fuel cells is also becoming increasingly hotly debated on the stock exchange. The takeover of Hydrogenics, the Canadian frontrunner in fuel cell systems for trucks and rail vehicles as well as for electrolysers, by the US company Cummins Engine, should make people sit up and even trigger a wave of further takeovers or participations of listed companies in the industry.
The momentum for the fuel cell is constantly improving with increasing dynamics. Recent co-operations such as those between Bosch and PowerCell, but also positive statements on fuel cells from automobile manufacturers such as Audi are attracting attention. Will China be the driver again, as it was when the batteries were introduced and before that in the field of renewable energies? There, new funding guidelines are about to be introduced, which are intended to favour and strongly promote the fuel cell and the hydrogen infrastructure, while the subsidies for purely battery-operated vehicles will, depending on the radius, be abolished in full or to a large extent.
Canadian producer Hydrogenics (Nasdqaq: HYGS) and British manufacturer ITM Power (London: ITM) aren’t entirely comparable, but they use similar technologies. There are some commonalities in the form of power-to-gas projects, hydrogen stations and powerful electrolyzers to generate the gas. Their market caps aren’t as far apart as I would expect based on the number and contract value of bookings. Both stocks have experienced severe price drops.
The dust has settled on a rally to the top and a share price that nearly tripled temporarily. Stock market experts like to call it chart consolidation and profit taking. ITM (London: ITM) was successful in raising EUR 120 million in fresh capital. Now, the British manufacturer’s market capitalization is above long-term expectations despite its bright outlook. I think investors should put this one on the watchlist, but look for other, more promising options in the meantime.
Northern Germany is well on its way to becoming a power-to-gas El Dorado. The past years have seen citizens’ initiatives and businesses initiate projects to explore new avenues in this wind-rich region. Most of their activities have yet to hit the mainstream news and some weren’t even known to many professionals in the industry. But recently, an increasing number of publications have been focusing on ongoing projects, so we thought it was time to take a closer look at what’s happening.
ITM Power (NASDAQ: ITMPF) is the first R&D fuel cell business from the UK making the jump onto the British stock exchange. ITM manufacturers power-to-gas systems, H2 filling stations and electrolyzers. Currently, it is working on a module-based electrolyzer that could allow for combinations offering up to 100 MW capacity.
There has been quite an interest in energy storage recently. And as ever more power-to-gas systems have been popping up all over Germany, project planners are increasingly turning their attention to the key elements found on-site: electrolyzers. These electrochemical units to create hydrogen have been around for a long time.
Despite a higher-than-expected net loss of USD 1.9 million in the third quarter and only USD 6.7 million in revenue – down 30 percent from the same period the year prior – Hydrogenics could report a record USD 106.2 million in order bookings, of which USD 30 million should be realized within the next 12 months. One of the customers that had placed new orders was E.ON, and the integration of fuel cell stacks with trains and streetcars in collaboration with Alstom is turning out to be a success.
The changes on the Hydrogen Europe board are not over yet. At the assembly in Brussels on Nov. 24, 2016, the association’s members elected Nils Aldag from sunfire as energy chair, Denis Thomas from Hydrogenics as membership and joint undertaking commitment chair and Werner Diwald from the DWV as association pillar chair. Aldag replaced Katharina Beumelburg from Siemens and Thomas succeeded Thomas Melczer, who used to work at Proton Motor