Anglo American has entered a non-binding agreement with engineering firm First Mode Holding to merge its nuGen Zero Emissions Haulage Solution (ZEHS) with the latter.
Operating as an independent entity under the First Mode name, the merged group will focus on developing the nuGen ZEHS.
Earlier, First Mode collaborated with Anglo and other companies to develop nuGen ZEHS.
In May 2022, Anglo rolled out the nuGen ZEHS hydrogen-driven mine haul truck prototype at its Mogalakwena platinum-group metals mine in Mogalakwena, South Africa.
The latest deal includes Anglo’s investment in the combined entity and is aimed at enhancing the development and commercialisation of nuGen ZEHS.
This agreement between Angle and First Mode also involves a commitment for the conversion of the miner’s ultra-class haul trucks to zero-emission. At present, nearly 400 of these trucks are in operation.
It also includes the provision of key supporting infrastructure, including refuelling, recharging, and hydrogen production.
First Mode said in a statement: “The new First Mode entity allows strategic third parties to co-invest alongside Anglo American, offering the opportunity to accelerate their own decarbonisation goals and participate in the potential offered by clean ZEHS technology.”
Anglo will own a majority stake in the new entity upon the deal closing in Q4 2022. The company currently has a 10% holding in First Mode.
Furthermore, the new merged group will enable ‘strategic third parties’ to co-invest, along with Anglo and First Mode.
In a statement, Anglo said: “The technologies and capabilities that it has been developing as part of the nuGen project with First Mode present opportunities beyond Anglo American’s haul truck fleet, including across other industries that rely on heavy-duty forms of transport such as rail.”