Rockwell Automation, Inc. (NYSE: ROK), the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and digital transformation, announces an unprecedented partnership with Bravo Motor Company, a California-based business offering applied innovation around decarbonization, with a focus on the production of batteries, vehicles, and energy-storage systems.
With the new alliance, Rockwell Automation will contribute to the provision of cutting-edge solutions for the manufacture of batteries and electric vehicles in the Brazilian market, based on the concept of the circular economy.
The partnership announcement ceremony took place at Fundação Dom Cabral - Aloysio Faria Campus in Minas Gerais, Brazil. According to John Miles, Rockwell Automation's Global Head of Future Mobility, the initiative will include technological support from Rockwell Automation to ramp up the project of the first Gigafactory in Latin America, based on digitalization, including integrated management, production optimization and sustainability. All this is done using tools that measure efficiency, operational quality, and productivity.
In addition, Rockwell Automation will also provide modern digital solutions for maximizing results and accelerated “time to market”, with simulation, optimization, and augmented reality (AR) technologies, integrated with engineering and manufacturing.
“For Rockwell Automation, it is extremely important to support companies and projects aligned with our purpose and strategic direction,” explains Miles. “Bravo and the Colossus Cluster project meet our goal of further fostering innovation and ESG initiatives in Brazil. This project is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to jointly drive ESG, sustainability practices, and innovation in the country. It is rare to find a company you so perfectly align with on vision and purpose. Together, we want to make that vision a reality.”
During the ceremony, Leandro Kruger, Regional Director for Rockwell Automation, also mentioned: “In these 20 years of experience in the industry, I have been able to see how economic industrial activity and the implementation of technology change the reality of regions, countries, and towns. This is a unique opportunity that brings together aspects that are very difficult to find. From the locality, the technology, the talents involved, and the availability of resources that Nova Lima provides, we can transform the world together into a more productive and consequently more sustainable one. This is the best opportunity to create business ties in different areas, both industrial and social.”
The CEO of Bravo Motor Company, Eduardo Javier Muñoz, emphasizes that the partnership was a result of the interaction of the ecosystem, as it was understood by both companies that joint efforts could generate a unique opportunity not only for Brazil, but also for the world.
“8% of Brazilian jobs are directly or indirectly linked to the automotive production chain, placing Brazil as a strong global player,” says Muñoz. “The bet for the future of the entire ecosystem is electrification and, therefore, the need for batteries that adhere to this demand has become even more strategic.
“We are very happy to bring a multinational such as Rockwell Automation, which has great experience in large-scale production battery factories, to have the best battery industry in the world in Nova Lima. We chose the Brazilian market due to the capacity of people and because it has strategic materials for battery production. Of course, working together with strategic partners such as Rockwell Automation, providing us with cutting-edge technologies, will bring even more assertiveness to projects,” he highlights.
Technology, innovation, and sustainability go hand in hand
Operating in California since 2012, Bravo Motor Company has worked with and participated as a collaborator and investor for battery development. And this activity provided the company with the ability to access battery manufacturing technology as well as battery materials.
Muñoz explains that, regarding vehicles, the focus on mobility fleets such as taxis, vans, buses and urban delivery vehicles, for example, offers a range of options to meet a high-demand market, which already has economic viability, but a limited supply due to lack of batteries.
“Partnering with Rockwell Automation will allow us to establish not just a local supply chain and battery factory that will produce our vehicles and energy storage systems, but also the massive production of local electric and hybrid vehicles for other companies to which we will supply batteries,” he comments.
Solutions for optimization of the automotive production chain
Gustavo Lima, Rockwell Automation’s Strategic Account Manager, explains that in addition to the efficient factory, the ESG issue is very much related to the partnership.
“Energy optimization has become a priority, since the concepts of ESG and sustainability are on the rise, especially in the context of decarbonization of the vehicle chain. Thus, we are using our products as operational efficiency and productivity tools to ensure lower consumption and more energy efficiency with responsibility,” he explains.
According to Lima, modern digital tools for optimizing results are also noteworthy: “Through our solutions, Bravo will be able to make the operation of the factories faster, or to get ahead of the competition in this market.”
Muñoz says that taking on a partner that works as hard as Bravo to transform the current reality into a better future, contributing with expertise and technology, is essential. “This alliance allows us to prepare our own production lines, management systems, etc. In addition, each strategic supplier around us guarantees a coordinated, high-quality environment. Our goal is to make the Brazilian facility a model in the future to be replicated in other locations, such as the USA, Europe, the Middle East, Africa, etc.”.
Miles notes that the automotive sector is one of Rockwell Automation’s focused industries and the company is investing in this market. “We have focused on companies in the production chain and Bravo is a company that is bringing the essence of the new and evolving technology, which is the battery and eventually the electric vehicles and energy storage systems that will utilize the battery. The expectation is that our investment will enable Bravo to use Rockwell Automation solutions to make the project successful. We will work very closely with our product, industry, and sales teams to ensure the success we aim for,” he concludes.