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Qatar Wants a Piece of QuantumScape, Buys 4.69% Stake in It

Countries that live from oil and gas sales are probably worried about the EV transition. They may keep selling fossil fuels for other applications, but prices will fall drastically when vehicles no longer need gasoline or diesel. Qatar is aware of that, and its sovereign fund, the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), bought a 4.69% stake in QuantumScape.
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The American company has promised to present a commercially viable solid-state cell until 2025. Volkswagen is one of its partners, and it has already said that the first manufacturing plant for these batteries will be in Germany, which shows that the automaker is pretty confident QuantumScape will be able to deliver.

QIA’s investment in QuantumScape is equivalent to $446 million when you consider the company’s current market cap of $9.5 billion. Although it seems to be quite a modest investment for a sovereign fund, it may improve its investment in the company when it reveals its solid-state battery. On the other hand, if that were the plan, the best moment to do so would be before this new cell is presented.

Qatar is not the first country with petrodollars in its pockets to pursue new technologies and invest in electric mobility. Saudi Arabia is also investing heavily in that by being one of the most prominent stakeholders at Lucid. The country even wants to have a Lucid factory somewhere to export these electric cars. It is not clear if it will be in Jeddah or Neom, cities with ports to the Red Sea.

Both countries also face massive criticism. Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, is accused of having ordered the assassination of Jamal Ahmad Khashoggi. The journalist would have been murdered on October 2, 2018, at the Saudi Arabian Consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.

Qatar faces accusations of human rights violations with foreign workers and minorities. The repercussion has been so bad that multiple organizations think countries should boycott the 2022 World Cup.

 
 
 
 
 

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