Hyundai expands investment in new batteries, mobility services

By Cho Chung-un
  • Published : Sept 11, 2018 - 16:05
  • Updated : Sept 11, 2018 - 16:05

Hyundai Motor is investing in foreign startups in the US that develop solid-state batteries and mobility services, as part of its investment in future technologies, according to news reports.

The South Korean carmaker was among a list of investors in the Series A funding round arranged by Solid Power, a Colorado-based solid-state battery cells maker, according to Bloomberg on Tuesday. The list of investors for the $20 million financing round also included the venture capital unit of Samsung Electronics and Solvay. The amount of investment by Hyundai and Samsung was not revealed.

With the investment, Solid Power will set up a manufacturing unit of solid-state batteries, according to the report. Solid-state batteries have been in the spotlight for their possible competing role against lithium-ion batteries. Solid-state batteries are believed to be safer than lithium-ion batteries as the latter uses liquid-type electrolytes prone to fires and explosions. 

John Suh of Hyundai Cradle (Hyundai Motor)

Targeting the growing mobility market, Hyundai’s venture capital arm Cradle has acquired shares in Migo, a mobile app for on-demand rides, the company said.

Launched in 2017, Migo helps people to find the most optimized transportation services, including ride-sharing, car sharing, bike sharing and public transportation.

The mobile app offers services in more than 75 cities in North America.

Investing in Migo provides ways for the company to study the mobility market in the US and to secure technologies to take the lead in the market in the future, the company said.

Hyundai is the only carmaker investmenting in Migo, it added.

The portion of shares that Hyundai holds in Migo was not disclosed.

The size of the mobility service market in the US is expected to grow from the current $49 billion to $292 billion in 2025 and $458 billion in 2030, according to the company.

Hyundai has also invested in mobility service companies in Europe and Southeast Asia, including Revv, Mesh Korea, Grab and Immotor.

By Cho Chung-un (