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General Motors Buys a Stake in Pure Watercraft

General Motors acquires stake in electric boat startup Pure Watercraft

General Motors has taken a 25% stake in electric outboard motor boat start-up Pure Watercraft, with GM describing itself as making the switch to electric motors this year. Read more [General Motors Boosts Spending on Electric Vehicles by 30%].

Pure Watercraft engines use lithium-ion batteries to replace outboard engines that burn gas or diesel with a power of 40-50 hp. Conventional fuel-powered engines contribute to causing environmental problems, including noise pollution, smog and water pollution are most visible on the surface of the water following the boat ride, while the Pure systems are quieter and cleaner.

Sales of outboard motors in the United States reached record levels in 2020, according to the National Marine Shipbuilders Association (NMMA), representing a market growth for the ninth consecutive year to nearly $3.4 billion, as it demonstrated its interest in the electric marine transportation market in October when talking about Ultium batteries and Hydrotec hydrogen-based energy storage cell platforms.

The deal between Pure and GM is valued at $150 million and includes payment-in-kind commitments and capital invested in the auto company, but the ratio between cash and non-cash payments was not disclosed.

With its new investment, General Motors will become a supplier of parts to Pure Watercraft, as well as a contributor to new product development, bringing its expertise in engineering, design and manufacturing to help the start-up set up new plants.

Pure Watercraft’s post-investment valuation is $600 million, and the company, which has 55 employees, has already raised $37 million in another funding round.

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