Komatsu acquires ABS to encourage electrification movement

Nov. 21, 2023
ABS will continue to operate as an independent entity but will partner with Komatsu to provide battery solutions to the company.

Komatsu, a manufacturer of construction, mining, forestry and industrial heavy equipment, has aquired the American Battery Solutions (ABS) company, a developer and manufacturer of advanced lithium-ion batteries. The financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Komatsu is planning to close the acquisition once all necessary procedures for the closing are completed.

"We are excited to join the Komatsu family with its global presence," said Subhash Dhar, founder and CEO of ABS. "This partnership will position ABS as a leading partner for electrification of industrial equipment and commercial vehicles globally. We are thankful for the support of our initial investors, KCK Group and are pleased to enable a successful exit after only 4.5 years. Komatsu's acquisition of ABS is testament to the intellectual and manufacturing assets ABS has developed in the span of four years."

The aquisition of ABS by Komatsu comes on the heels of launching a new transit bus battery pack for New Flyer Industries. ABS has also secured long-term supply agreements with leaders in key market segments, including the largest last mile delivery vehicle fleet and the largest RV manufacturer. The acquisition agreement signifies another major milestone for ABS and demonstrates the progress and strong positioning  that ABS has in the advanced battery market.

ABS will operate as a stand-alone business entity within Komatsu and will continue its growth plans by executing on its current and prospective customer programs in the commercial vehicle segments. The mining and construction opportunities provided through Komatsu will enable ABS to position itself as one of the world’s leading providers of battery systems in both on-highway and off-highway markets.

"After more than a year of evaluating potential battery partners, ABS stood out because of the depth of the team and their strong technical skill base, breadth of business and battery systems know-how and battery manufacturing expertise for heavy duty markets," said Taisuke Kusaba, CTO and president, development division, Komatsu Ltd.

The acquisition of ABS will enable Komatsu to develop and produce its own battery-operated construction and mining equipment, through the integration of ABS’ battery technology with Komatsu’s knowledge and network. The first equipment produced with ABS’ batteries will be used to power mining equipment in North and South America, where demand for electrification has been increasing. In the future, Komatsu will aim to expand the use of batteries in construction equipment and to establish a global supply system. Komatsu will continue to support ABS’ battery business to further develop the electrification business post-acquisition.

The construction, mining, forestry and industrial heavy equipment markets are experiencing rapid and massive growth in electrification driven by carbon dioxide reduction efforts, regulatory demands, ESG and operational improvement needs.

About the Author

Eman Abu-Khaled | Associate Editor

Eman Abu-Khaled is a recent graduate of Kent State University with a bachelors in journalism. She works through Endeavor Business Media with Mass Transit as an associate editor. Abu-Khaled brings a fresh perspective to the visual side of journalism with an interest in video and photography work.