Better Place Places One Foot Into China
It still remains to be seen whether Better Place can establish itself in China as a business or Chinese companies will "adopt" Better Place idea themselves - in any way development of this technology in the huge potential market for Electric Cars in China is very promising.
"We have an interesting interview with Mike Sieb - President of International Lithium Corp. Insiders are only buying this stock and Chinese partner apparently has spent 9 months doing DD on this company. We are looking forward to the announced drill campaign at Mariana Lithium and Brine project in Argentina now."
"Looks like Better Place is back in the game or at least they are raising money again. Recently there was a total mass media black out on this company, but apparently it is still moving forward. Big boys are taking their seats in the Next Big Thing - Electric Cars. Among investors in this round are UBS and GE.
Better Place has made the largest order in the history of Electric Cars for 100,000 of Renault Fluence ZE. Now the company has the cash for the down payment and its ambitious plan for the switching stations. Connection with China will be very interesting to watch: whether Chinese will allow Better Place for a market share there or will just push them to share technology and go forward alone.Stakes in this game are getting higher and it is still under the radar screens of the most investors."
PUBLISHED DECEMBER 12, 2011
BY BERTEL SCHMITT
China has big plans for the electrification of its cars. After spending a whole day at Beijing’s airport a week ago, waiting for the smog (not the “fog” as it was officially called) to clear, all I can say: “Get on with it.” (Unless the electrification results in more smoke-belching coal-fired powerplants.)
Better Place, the company that wants to swap the battery in your EV in the same time it would take to pour gas in your car, always wanted to have a piece of the Chinese action. Now, at least there is a first step into China. Today, China’s Southern Power Grid (CSG) and Better Place opened their “Switchable Electric Car Experience Center” in China’s southern city of Guangzhou.
According to a Better Place release, CSG is part of a “government-led but enterprise-guided” approach to providing energy for EVs:
“The company’s strategy has battery switch at its core combined with centralized EV charging. CSG will promote the development of national technical standards and build a smart EV network. CSG has signed EV infrastructure agreements with Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, and other provinces. The company has also signed similar cooperative agreements with Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Nanning, Haikou, and other cities.”
Nevertheless, it will be a while until you can drive into a station in China’s south, yell “switch ‘er out” (in Chinese) and head for the bathroom while your car is fitted a fully charged battery faster than your hands will dry.
Located in a green (see picture) building in the city’s largest auto mall, the station in Guangzhou is a demonstration project only, and will open to the public next month. The biggest obstacle is that currently, you have a hard time buying an electric vehicle in China at retail, and don’t even think of getting one with switchable battery technology. Asked whether Better Place has a contract with a manufacturer in China, Better Place spokesman John Proctor says:
However, Proctor reports that there is great interest in the technology amongst China’s automakers. He hopes that the center will “help raise additional interest amongst other players in China"