Global automotive and industrial supplier Schaeffler today signed an agreement with Micromobility services and solutions GmbH, a wholly-owned subsidiary of meisterwerk ventures GmbH, for the sale of Schaeffler Group’s stake in Bio-Hybrid GmbH.
meisterwerk ventures is owned by five venture capital partners, which include a venture owned by Gerald Vollnhals, Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid’s current managing director. Vollnhals will stay on as managing director of the company, which will be renamed Bio-Hybrid GmbH. The new company will continue to trade under the Bio-Hybrid brand. The parties have agreed not to disclose the financial details of the deal. The sale is not subject to competition regulatory approval, and the transaction is expected to be completed in the near future.
Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid GmbH started development work on a four-wheel pedelec bike, dubbed the “Bio-Hybrid”, in late 2017. The vehicle combines the freedom and maneuverability of a bicycle with the carrying capacity and weather protection of a small car. Being a pedelec, it is powered by a combination of muscle power and an assistive electric motor, meaning it can be driven without a driver license in cycle lanes. The Schaeffler Bio-Hybrid company was established as a startup within the Schaeffler Group and has sites in Nuremberg and Munich.
“We are grateful to Schaeffler for supporting us in developing the vehicle for volume production, which is scheduled to start in the second quarter of 2021,” said Gerald Vollnhals. “We are especially pleased to announce that all existing jobs will be retained under the change of ownership. In fact, our fantastic team will be working even more intensively with our key partners and suppliers. So we’ll be keeping our foot on the gas and sticking to our goal of generating four-digit Bio-Hybrid unit sales in 2021. We would like to start the reservation phase before the end of this year.”
Uwe Wagner, Schaeffler AG’s Chief Technology Officer, was equally positive. “The joint development of the Bio-Hybrid has been a very exciting project and a great learning experience for everyone involved. We are delighted to have smoothed the way for this highly promising new mobility concept. Being independent from the Schaeffler Group, the new company will be more agile and will be able to drive volume production with greater focus.”