Canadian fuel cell maker Ballard Power Systems says it’s better positioned to obtain more automotive business after third-quarter revenue increased 54 per cent from a year earlier to $31.9 million. The company reported its results in U.S. dollars.
The Burnaby, B.C., company’s net loss narrowed to $1 million from $3.2 million a year earlier.
Ballard posted adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization of $900,000 in the third quarter, swinging from an adjusted EBITDA loss of $1.5 million a year earlier. The improvement was primarily driven by higher revenue and higher gross margin, the company said.
Ballard has never shown a net profit since its founding 38 years ago. But it has spent this year inking deals and letters of intent with a number of companies, including China’s Zhongshan Broad Ocean Motor Co., Belgian bus builder Van Tool NV and the Kenworth Truck Co.
Ballard says it had an order backlog worth $236.8 million from customers that have made contractual commitments as of Sept. 30.
“We are seeing early adoption of fuel cell products for an expanding array of heavy duty [fuel cell electric vehicle] applications, from mass transit buses to commercial trucks and trains. At the same time, fuel cell product adoption is also broadening globally, encompassing China, Europe, the U.S. and Japan,” CEO Randy MacEwen said in a statement. “This growing product traction, combined with embedded optionality inherent in our technology solutions business -- including opportunities in the automotive and drone markets -- uniquely position Ballard to leverage the worldwide trend toward zero-emission transportation.”
During the third quarter, Ballard:
- Accepted a letter of intent to provide fuel cell engines to Van Hool NV for buses to be used in Pau, France;
- Received a purchase order from Nisshinbo Holdings, a key Japanese partner;
- Announced the opening of a fuel cell stack joint venture operation in China.