The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG to lead the development of sustainable transportation by forming joint venture for large-scale production of fuel cells

Sharing the Green Deal vision of sustainable transport and a carbon neutral Europe by 2050, two leading companies in the commercial vehicle industry, Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group, have signed a preliminary non-binding agreement to establish a new joint venture. The intention is to develop, produce and commercialize fuel cell systems for heavy-duty vehicle applications and other use cases. Daimler will consolidate all its current fuel cell activities in the joint venture. The Volvo Group will acquire 50% in the joint venture for the sum of approximately EUR 0.6 billion on a cash and debt free basis. 

“Transport and logistics keep the world moving, and the need for transport will continue to grow. Truly CO2-neutral transport can be accomplished through electric drive trains with energy coming either from batteries or by converting hydrogen on board into electricity. For trucks to cope with heavy loads and long distances, fuel cells are one important answer and a technology where Daimler has built up significant expertise through its Mercedes-Benz fuel cell unit over the last two decades. This joint initiative with the Volvo Group is a milestone in bringing fuel cell powered trucks and buses onto our roads,” says Martin Daum, Chairman of the Board of Management Daimler Truck AG and Member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG.

“Electrification of road transport is a key element in delivering the so called Green Deal, a carbon neutral Europe and ultimately a carbon neutral world. Using hydrogen as a carrier of green electricity to power electric trucks in long-haul operations is one important part of the puzzle, and a complement to battery electric vehicles and renewable fuels. Combining the Volvo Group and Daimler’s experience in this area to accelerate the rate of development is good both for our customers and for society as a whole. By forming this joint venture, we are clearly showing that we believe in hydrogen fuel cells for commercial vehicles. But for this vision to become reality, other companies and institutions also need to support and contribute to this development, not least in order to establish the fuel infrastructure needed,” says Martin Lundstedt, Volvo Group President and CEO. 

The Volvo Group and Daimler Truck AG will be 50/50 partners in the joint venture, which will operate as an independent and autonomous entity, with Daimler Truck AG and the Volvo Group continuing to be competitors in all other areas of business. Joining forces will decrease development costs for both companies and accelerate the market introduction of fuel cell systems in products used for heavy-duty transport and demanding long-haul applications. In the context of the current economic downturn cooperation has become even more necessary in order to meet the Green Deal objectives within a feasible time-frame.

The common goal is for both companies to offer heavy-duty vehicles with fuel cells for demanding long-haul applications in series production in the second half of the decade. In addition, other automotive and non-automotive use cases are also part of the new joint venture’s scope. 

To enable the joint venture, Daimler Trucks is bringing together all group-wide fuel cell activities in a new Daimler Truck fuel cell unit. Part of this bundling of activities is the allocation of the operations of “Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH”, which has longstanding experience in the development of fuel cell and hydrogen storage systems for various vehicle applications, to Daimler Truck AG. 

The joint venture will include the operations in Nabern/Germany (currently headquarters of the Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH) with production facilities in Germany and Canada.

The signed preliminary agreement is non-binding. A final agreement is expected by Q3 and closing before year-end 2020. All potential transactions are subject to examination and approval by the responsible competition authorities.

Facts: Fuel cells and hydrogen as fuel
•  A hydrogen fuel cell converts the chemical energy of the fuel, in this case hydrogen, and oxygen (in the air) into electricity. The electricity powers the electrical motors that propel an electrical vehicle. 
•  There are two main ways to produce the hydrogen needed. So-called green hydrogen can be produced locally at the gas station, using electricity to convert water into hydrogen. Blue hydrogen is expected to be produced from natural gas, utilizing carbon capture technology to create a carbon neutral fuel.

2020-04-21

For further information, please contact:
Claes Eliasson, Volvo Group Media Relations, +46 31 323 72 29
Florian Martens, Daimler Trucks & Buses Media Relations +49 160 8687552

Nigerian bank DLM on the move delivers at all levels – with exciting plans in the pipeline

DLM Capital Group – a developmental investment bank that supports economic and social infrastructure projects with the aim of driving GDP growth and improving lives. 

Founding chairman and group CEO of investment firm DLM Capital Group , Sonnie Ayere
Founding chairman and group CEO of investment firm DLM Capital Group, Sonnie Ayere

DLM Advisory Partners (DLMAP), formerly Dunn Loren Merrifield Advisory Partners, is the advisory and capital-raising arm of DLM Capital group. The principal services provided by DLMAP include financial advisory, debt capital-raising, equity capital raising, mergers and acquisitions, and company set-up advisory.

DLMAP has played a leading role in structured finance and securitisation within Nigeria. “We have acted as sole arranger to more than 80 percent of structured finance transactions in Nigeria, and 100 percent of all securitisation transactions in the market,” says CEO Sonnie Ayere.

Most Innovative Transaction of 2019

In 2019, DLM executed the first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) securitisation in Nigeria, working with the sponsor, Primero Transport Services Limited (PTSL). The system caters to residents of the country’s most densely populated city, Lagos. DLM raised ₦16.50bn ($45.8m) through the securitisation of the company’s BRT tickets receivables. The sponsor is licensed to operate the longest BRT route in West Africa, 35.3km, with its 434-bus fleet.

DLM Capital Group

A feasibility study conducted put the daily passenger carriage at about 226,300 passengers per day. Due to working capital pressures, the company was only able to serve an average of 135,000 daily passengers before the securitisation transaction in 2019.

The ₦16.5bn 17 percent Series 1 Fixed Rate Bonds issued were primarily used to refinance all pre-existing commercial banking loan facilities on the books of the sponsor. The transaction provided the company with savings in interest, shaving the cost of funds from 27 percent per annum to 17 percent. At the same time, it extended the tenor of the company’s debt from three years to seven.

With this transaction, DLM was able to provide the company with up to 10 percent savings in interest, reducing the cash required to service debt and improving the company’s working capital. DLM also advised on the restructuring of the company’s balance sheet by moving the operating assets into a new vehicle and eliminated the strain of depreciation charges.

Focus for 2020

DLM is in discussions with industry stakeholders and umbrella bodies to establish proprietary funding conduits across key sectors of the Nigerian economy. It intends to include microfinance, agriculture, education, health care and a continuation of other funding programmes for the mortgage, real estate and transportation sectors.

Working with a DFI partner, the company recently concluded the design of an aggregation vehicle aimed at providing local currency, wholesale funding solutions to micro-lenders in Nigeria by way of loan book securitisation.

A similar platform to provide financing to primary users of agriculture commodities is currently being developed.

European FinTech Lending Industry to Hit $9.6bn Value This Year

Innovative lending services, such as crowd and P2P marketplace loans, are becoming increasingly popular in many European countries. With the development of financial technology, recent years have witnessed a growing number of business customers and private borrowers using these digital financial services.

According to data gathered by Finanso.se, the European fintech, or the alternative loans industry, is expected to hit a $9.6bn transaction value this year, growing by 10% year-on-year.

Crowdlending Generates Nearly 70% of Total Market Transaction Value

After the financial crisis, many traditional banks became very restrictive in approving loans, especially in some European countries, leaving businesses and individual consumers with no access to much-needed cash. This created space for lending platforms, which connected borrowers directly to lenders, and removed the banks from the equation.

Lending platforms use sophisticated computer algorithms to make lending decisions, provide fast loans, and lower rates to borrowers. Investors, on the other hand, are given the ability to easily invest in loans outside of their countries at attractive returns.

In 2017, the European fintech lending market hit $6.3bn value, revealed the Statista Alternative Lending Market Outlook. By the end of 2018, the market value increased by 20% and reached $7.5bn worth. The rising trend continued in the next twelve months with the entire market reaching $8.7bn value. The statistics indicate European fintech lending industry is expected to show an annual growth rate of 3.0% between 2020 and 2023, resulting in $10.5bn transaction value in the next three years.

The market’s largest segment is crowdlending or peer-to-peer business lending. In 2017, European peer-to-peer loans in the business sector reached $3.6bn worth. Over the last three years, the market value of the crowdlending loans increased by more than 75% and hit $6.5bn transaction value in 2020. Statistics show this amount will grow to nearly $7.2bn in the next three years.

Consumer peer-to-peer loans are forecast to edge up to $3.1bn value in 2020, twice less than business lending.

Number of European Fintech Loans to Reach 1.3 Million by 2023

Although peer-to-peer business loans represent the leading market segment, the statistics indicate a much higher number of consumer peer-to-peer loans in Europe. In 2017, there were more than 911,000 successfully funded alternative loans in the consumer segment.

Business peer-to-peer loans reached over 63,000, or 14 times less compared to consumer loans. In the last three years, consumer and business alternative loans rose to 1 million and 75,900, respectively. The average funding per loan in the crowdlending segment is expected to reach $86,185 this year. Statista survey indicates the total number of European fintech loans will amount to over 1.3 million by 2023.

Compared by geography, the United Kingdom represents the leading European fintech lending market, and the third-largest fintech lending market globally. According to statistics, the total value of UK fintech loans is expected to peak at a value of $4.8bn this year.

Switzerland ranked as the second-largest market in Europe with $1.4bn worth transactions in 2020, growing by remarkable 27.4% year-on-year. With a $796 million transaction value in 2020, Italy ranked as the third-largest fintech lending market in Europe.

However, besides Switzerland, Denmark and Spain are expected to see the highest growth rates in the following years, rising by 23.7% and 22.9% respectively year-on-year.

Read the full story here: https://finanso.se/european-fintech-lending-industry-to-hit-9-6bn-value-this-year/

What’s the secret to trading on the financial markets?

Giles Coghlan, chief currency analyst at HYCM

Giles Coghlan of HYCM
Giles Coghlan of HYCM

There are countless books claiming to elucidate exactingly how to invest over the long-term. However, ask any seasoned trader what the secret is to an effective investment strategy and you’ll quickly find there is no one tactic or panacea for consistent growth.

Instead, what most traders rely on is an informed and reactive understanding of both current affairs and unfolding market trends to help inform their investment decisions. By letting this understanding dynamically inform one’s portfolio, they are able to confidently react to sudden market shocks.

Investors must therefore have one eye on the present and one eye on the future, and understand how different social, political, geographical and economic events could impact their portfolio. This understanding must be informed by an awareness of how past events have affected the prices of different assets. Thankfully, there are plenty of useful ways that investors can prep for the future.  

Markets are all about cause and effect

The fundamental operation of the financial market is one of cause and effect; one event or price movement will inevitably affect the prices of other assets. Whilst this is a simple enough concept, big political and social events often trigger a multiplicity of effects, which can in turn impact on one another.

For example, the recent outbreak of coronavirus is having a major impact on global supply chains; China’s productivity has been negatively affected, which has had a flow-on effect on major businesses that rely on China as part of its supply chain.

In terms of market volatility, there is a huge amount of historical evidence which shows how the coronavirus could impact asset prices. One central theme is likely to be the increase of value in ‘hard commodities’ — physical investments like gold, steel and oil. That is because these so-called safe haven assets are perceived as having global appeal and consistent demand, and therefore offer greater resilience in times of volatile trading conditions.

Never overlook the advantages of an informed strategy

I doubt you could find many long-term traders who have not woken up one morning to see that there has been a dip in the value of their investments as a result of an unforeseen geopolitical event. For those who find themselves in this situation, it can be easy to panic and make uninformed decisions. This is the entirely wrong approach to take.

By its very nature, finance is an unpredictable sphere of work, and unexpected shocks are par for the course. That’s why the strongest financial plans tend to include or account for the unforeseen. When prices dip or there is a sudden market shock, it has been for the most past accounted for and leaves little room for sudden trades that are informed by the heart, not the mind.

Remember to diversify (within limit)

Another way of managing market volatility is ensuring your portfolio is diverse, with investments spread across multiple markets. Doing so reduces your portfolio’s risk of suffering significant loses should one particular market or sector be adversely affected by an unexpected event. However, the key to diversification is not to cast your net too wide.

The broad points that need internalising here can be surmised very briefly: knowledge is power.

Mastering the complex nature of different financial markets is not simply about watching the fluctuating prices of assets. It’s also about understanding the historical performance of different markets, analysing previous trends and using all this as a guide to manage your investments during sudden political and economic shocks.

What’s more, any investment decision or trade needs to be part of a bigger strategy with goals, returns and risk exposure all clearly defined. Doing this ensures that investors and traders are in the position to stay on top of their financial portfolio.

High Risk Investment Warning: CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 67% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how CFDs work and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money. For more information please refer to HYCM’s Risk Disclosure.

Giles Coghlan is Chief Currency Analyst at HYCM – an online provider of forex and Contracts for Difference (CFDs) trading services for both retail and institutional traders. HYCM is regulated by the internationally recognized financial regulator FCA. HYCM is backed by the Henyep Capital Markets Group established in 1977 with investments in property, financial services, charity, and education. The Group via its relevant subsidiaries have representations in Hong Kong, United Kingdom, Dubai, and Cyprus.

Global sell-off could be seen by investors as best buying opportunity in a decade

The worst global market sell-off since the 2008 crash will become an important buying-opportunity for investors, affirms the chief executive of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and services organisations.

The prediction by Nigel Green, CEO and founder of deVere Group, comes after equities lost a tenth of their value this week as investors piled into havens on growing concerns the coronavirus outbreak will hit the world economy and impact corporate profits.

Mr Green notes: “Until this week, the markets had largely shrugged off the impact of the outbreak of coronavirus.  We warned about complacency leaving many wide-open to nasty surprises.

“This has now changed. Investors have done a ‘one eighty’ – from a muted overly confident reaction to the serious and far-reaching global issue of coronavirus to running like headless chickens. 

“Both extremes are worrying and could potentially wreak havoc on investors’ returns.”

He continues: “However, the worst global market sell-off since the 2008 crash will almost certainly become an important buying-opportunity for many investors. 

“With markets on the brink of correction territory, panic-selling, mis-pricing of high quality equities, and lower entry points, this could turn out to be one of the key buying opportunities in the last 10 years.

“Some of the most successful investors will embrace volatility to create, maximise and protect their wealth.

“As ever in times of increased turbulence, there will be winners and losers. A professional fund manager will help investors take advantage of the opportunities that volatility presents and mitigate potential risks.

Earlier this week, Mr Green noted: “In the current volatile environment, investors – including myself – will be revising their portfolios and drip-feeding new money into the market to take advantage of the opportunities whilst reducing risk at the same time.”

The deVere CEO concludes: “Global investors should not be spooked by the return of volatility on stock markets but, where possible use it to their financial advantage.  

“Of course, no–one knows for sure what will happen in the immediate future but, as stock markets typically rise over a longer-term period, now is the time to capitalise on the more favourable prices of decent stocks.

“It can be expected that in coming days, serious investors will be bargain-hunting.”

Snow Software Acquires Embotics

Snow fortifies its ability to deliver complete technology intelligence with Embotics’ award-winning hybrid cloud management platform

UK – Dec. 4, 2019 – Snow Software, the global leader in technology intelligence solutions, today announced it has acquired Embotics, a hybrid cloud management company. This acquisition brings together two market leaders, enabling CIOs to understand and manage their full technology stack from software and hardware to infrastructure and applications, regardless of whether they live on-premises, in the cloud or in a hybrid environment.

Embotics offers a platform-neutral cloud management solution with one of the quickest time-to-value in the industry. It provides a fast and easy way to automate provisioning, reduce costs and ensure governance across private, public, hybrid and multicloud environments. Leading enterprises such as Nordstrom, NASA and HBO, and service providers like LG CNS and NTT Data, use Embotics to drive their digital transformation.

“The rapid adoption of hybrid cloud by the enterprise has created new challenges for technology and business leaders who must maximise the efficacy and efficiency of technology without sacrificing innovation, productivity or security,”said Vishal Rao, President and CEO of Snow. “Technology intelligence is the future of asset and cloud management, moving beyond the silos created by point tools to provide the insight and manageability organisations need to gain a competitive edge. Embotics is a highly strategic addition to Snow’s portfolio. We are thrilled to welcome the team to Snow and deliver even greater value to our customers and partners.”

“We built Embotics to provide enterprises and service providers with an easier, faster, platform-neutral and fully integrated solution for managing the hybrid cloud and beyond”said Jay Litkey, Founder and President of Embotics. “Today, these organisations are strategically blending on-premises, private, public and multicloud architectures, and that requires a flexible and multi-faceted approach to gain agility through automation while controlling costs and risks. By joining forces with Snow, Embotics will continue to address these issues and answer the next generation of challenges with integrated capabilities at a global scale. Both organisations have a customer-centric DNA and commitment to innovation that will help us achieve our shared vision of technology intelligence.”

Together, Snow and Embotics will offer the first platform that delivers CIOs an integrated perspective across their entire technology stack, empowering them to tackle use cases that require insight into both on-premises and cloud services, such as cloud migration planning, Bring-Your-Own-License (BYOL) optimisation and hybrid cloud cost management. The process of integrating Embotics into the Snow platform will begin immediately, and the companies will have a single go-to-market strategy starting in 2020. The combined business will be optimally positioned for strong growth with an expanded market presence as well as the field and operational resources needed to deliver cloud management at a global scale.

“As IT organisations work to balance transformation initiatives with day-to-day operations, hybrid and multicloud strategies are essential for today’s enterprise,” said William Fellows, Founder and Research Vice President at 451 Research. “Workloads now span public cloud, private cloud and legacy on-premises environments, and that mix is constantly changing to address the needs of the business. With Snow’s acquisition of Embotics, the market will benefit from the combination of their respective strengths on-prem and in the cloud, most notably when it comes to solving the unique challenges of hybrid environments.”

For more information on the acquisition and Snow’s platform, visit www.snowsoftware.com.

About Snow Software

Snow Software is the global leader in technology intelligence solutions, ensuring the trillions spent on all forms of technology is optimized to drive maximum value. More than 4,000 organizations around the world rely on Snow’s platform to provide complete visibility, optimize usage and spend and minimize regulatory risk. Headquartered in Stockholm, Snow has more local offices and regional support centers than any other software asset and cloud management provider, delivering unparalleled results to our customers and partners. To find out more about Snow Software, visit http://www.snowsoftware.com/ and follow Snow on Twitter @snowsoftware.