SK Inc. to acquire EV charger maker Signet EV
SK Inc. has agreed to acquire a controlling stake in local electric vehicle (EV) charger maker Signet EV for 293 billion won ($263 million), a major investment in the burgeoning EV market and related infrastructure.
The company announced Thursday that its board approved the plan to obtain a 55.5 percent share of the manufacturer.
With the acquisition, SK will focus on bolstering research and development into charging technology and extending its overseas business beyond the U.S. market.
Also on the cards is merging existing SK affiliates’ tech prowess with that of the acquired company.
“[SK] will be at the forefront of the era of automotive and electric vehicles as the group will combine its expertise on semiconductor and telecommunication with the manufacturing technology of EV charging machines,” SK said in a statement, hinting at a potential collaboration with relevant units like SK hynix and SK Telecom.
Since its inception in 2016, Signet EV has grown quickly, becoming the first company to earn regulatory approval in the United States to supply 350-kilowatt EV chargers in 2018.
Of its 61.9 billion won of sales last year, 51 billion won came from overseas.
The group announced a separate investment of $60 million into Swedish hybrid car manufacturer Polestar through a joint fund with Hangzhou’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group on the same day.
In the latest round of investment, Polestar raised a combined funding of $550 million from the Chongqing Chengxing Equity Investment Fund Partnership, Zibo Financial Holding and Zibo Hightech Industrial Investment, as well as SK.
The proceeds will be used to bolster its presence in Europe and China and to enter new markets including Korea in the second half of this year. Polestar will move to expand its production lines in China to reach an annual capacity of 100,000 vehicles.
The joint fund with Geely was created last month and has been managed by Geely subsidiary GLY Capital Investment, based in Hong Kong.
Geely is China’s largest privately-owned automaker and the owner of carmaker Volvo.
The fund has raised $300 million in total. SK and Geely offered $30 million each and raised the rest from institutional investors.
BY PARK EUN-JEE [email@example.com]