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All news, insights and events

LOI signing Hardt & POSCO: Realizing Hyperloop, the future of transportation

POSCO International Corporation (P-INT’L) signals its official entrance to the hyperloop business for next-generation transportation, together with EIT InnoEnergy supported Dutch Hardt Hyperloop, a leading global presence in hyperloop technology. P-INT’L and Hardt Hyperloop held an LOI Signing Ceremony in Songdo, Incheon on November 1st, 2022. Mr. Joo SiBo (CEO) of P-INT’L, Mr. Bertrand Van Ee (CEO, Hardt Hyperloop), and four co-founders of Hardt attended the ceremony.

Hyperloop is a new mode of high-speed transport in which autonomous vehicles travel through low-pressure tubes. Meeting the growing demand for sustainable and affordable high-speed transportation of freight and people, it has lower costs compared to high-speed rail in construction and operations. In addition, it is eco-friendly and highly efficient in energy consumption, particularly as compared to air and road transport, where hyperloop is 10x more energy efficient. Hyperloop has been spotlighted as the fifth generation of transportation, which can rise to the growing transport demands and green goals of the world.

Hardt Hyperloop started in 2017, when four of its co-founders were the winners of the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition, hosted by Elon Musk. Following on their subsequent successes, Hardt is also part of the hyperloop industry standardization in Europe with their core technologies in magnetic levitation, propulsion, and lane-switching, among others. More recently, Hardt is participating in major hyperloop research and development projects in the Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland, Belgium, and others.

P-INT’L is interested in the hyperloop industry for two primary reasons. Firstly, the hyperloop is a new business with huge potential, which will transform future transportation after commercialization. Secondly, the hyperloop is an anticipated complement to essential portions of future transportation through its sustainable, low cost, and safety advantages.

In signing the LOI today, P-INT’L and Hardt agreed to:
• Supply POSCO steel products for the EHC (European Hyperloop Center), hyperloop test center
• Cooperation in hyperloop business sales and marketing
• Integrated business partnership, including P-INT’L’s investment in Hardt

Meanwhile, P-INT’L plans to enlarge the hyperlop industry ecosystem by utilizing synergies from POSCO Group companies’ capabilities, such as: steel product technology of POSCO, infrastructure technology of POSCO E&C, and track manufacturing of POSCO Mobility Solutions.

Mr. Joo SiBo, CEO of P-INT’L mentioned, “In the past, our trading company found business opportunity in existing industries. However, from now on, we will meet the challenge to raise a new industry by leading investments. P-INT’L will think outside the box to develop and invest on future green business in creative way.”

Mr. Bertrand van Ee, Hardt Hyperloop CEO, stated: “In our joint pursuit we create a better world leading towards a net-zero society. We are truly excited about this partnership with POSCO that brings hyperloop to the global stage.” Hardt co-founder and Chief Development Officer, Tim Houter, followed:  “We are thrilled that POSCO’s trust in our collaboration since 2020 has led to this point. POSCO’s investment, as well as the cooperation in sales and marketing, is a tremendous step for us in making the hyperloop dream come true.”