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Nikola's stock up on deal for hydrogen-fuel infrastructure

By Steve Gelsi

FirstElement Fuel to provide fueling for trucks starting at a station in Oakland, Calif.

Nikola Corp.'s stock was up by 4.7% on Wednesday after the company named FirstElement Fuel Inc. as an authorized Nikola fueling-station partner for hydrogen-powered trucks.

The two companies inked a 10-year agreement to refuel Nikola hydrogen-fuel-cell electric trucks at FirstElement Fuel's hydrogen-refueling station in Oakland, Calif.

"This collaboration unifies their commitment to driving the widespread adoption of hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles," the companies said.

The station will be able to refuel 200 trucks per day.

Nikola said it's planning to use several paths to build a network of up to 60 stations, including a Hyla-branded station, customer-owned stations and public truck stops.

It's currently planning to have two stations by the end of 2023: FirstElement Fuel's Oakland station, located near the city's commercial port, as well as a Hyla-branded station in Ontario, Calif.

"With additional stations planned, this signifies a powerful synergy between Nikola and [FirstElement Fuel], driving us towards a shared vision of a future with cleaner and more sustainable solutions," said Joe Cappello, Nikola's president of energy.

The privately held FirstElement Fuel raised $105 million in a Series D round of venture funding in November 2021, with backing from Air Water Inc. (JP:4088), Japan Infrastructure Initiative Co., Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. (JP:8306) and Nikkiso Co. (JP:6376), according to FactSet data.

Nikola's stock (NKLA) has fallen 55% in 2023, compared with a 43.4% rise by the Nasdaq COMP.

Also read: Nikola founder Trevor Milton sentenced to four years for defrauding investors in his electric-truck company

-Steve Gelsi

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12-20-23 1157ET

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