GM is investing within the electrical boat start-up Pure Watercraft

Basic Motors, calling itself “all-in electrification” earlier this yr, has acquired a 25% stake in Pure Watercraft, a Seattle start-up that makes electrical outboard motors for boats, the businesses CNBC mentioned with.

Pure Watercraft engines use lithium-ion batteries, changing 40 to 50 horsepower outboards that burn fuel or diesel. Conventional fuel-powered boats contribute to environmental issues comparable to noise nuisance, smog and water air pollution, which is clearly seen of their wake on the water. Pure’s programs are a lot quieter and cleaner.

For Andy Rebele, CEO of Pure Watercraft, a lifelong fishing and boating fanatic and former rowing coach, a private drive to unravel these issues got here with an amazing market alternative.

In response to the Nationwide Marine Producer’s Affiliation (NMMA), outboard motor gross sales in america hit report ranges in 2020, rising to an estimated $ 3.4 billion for the ninth straight yr.

“The boat market is rising prefer it hasn’t been since World Conflict II,” says Rebele. “Throughout the pandemic, folks needed to do one thing with their households, with their pods. Getting on the water is without doubt one of the ideally suited issues.”

This rising market can be on GM’s radar. CEO Mary Barra hinted at GM’s curiosity in electrical marine transportation in a weblog submit in October the place she talked in regards to the firm’s Ultium battery and Hydrotec gasoline cell platforms.

This pontoon is powered by a totally electrical outboard motor from Pure Watercraft.

Courtesy: Pure Watercraft

In response to Rebele, the cope with GM has a complete worth of $ 150 million, together with commitments in form and the capital invested by the auto large. The corporate doesn’t disclose the division between money and non-cash advantages.

With its funding, GM will turn out to be a element provider to Pure Watercraft, a co-developer of recent merchandise, and can present engineering, design and manufacturing experience to assist the start-up construct new factories, the businesses instructed CNBC.

The brand new partnership with GM ought to assist the startup deal with provide chain issues as Pure Watercraft grows, Rebele mentioned.

For GM, the funding in Pure Watercraft is one other step in a sequence of measures to develop its battery and gasoline cell programs exterior of the automotive sector. Firstly of this yr, GM introduced plans to develop and market electrical locomotives with Wabtec. It has additionally proven curiosity in utilizing its batteries and gasoline cells in aerospace and army purposes.

Pure Watercraft’s post-money valuation is $ 600 million. The 55-employee start-up had beforehand raised $ 37 million in enterprise capital.

– CNBC’s Mike Wayland contributed to this report.

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